Looking ahead

To: UC Santa Cruz Community

From: Chancellor George Blumenthal

Happy New Year! 2017 promises to be a year unlike any other, and I wish you the best as we forge ahead, each of us finding our voice and engaging in the world around us.

On campus, we are poised to build on the great successes we celebrated last year, including the naming of Rachel Carson College, Harry Noller's Breakthrough Prize, and a banner year in fundraising. We will name more faculty to endowed chairs and review a record number of undergraduate applications to select the best-qualified, most diverse Class of 2017. New academic programs will serve students, and new outreach programs will build our connections locally and in Silicon Valley.

This year will also usher in changes in campus leadership. I look forward to sharing good news shortly about the recruitment of a campus provost/executive vice chancellor, and I want to again thank Herbie Lee for serving on an interim basis. We are recruiting a new dean of the Social Sciences Division and a new vice chancellor for Information Technology Services. Later this week, we will welcome a new campus diversity officer for staff and students, and a new campus counsel will be announced shortly.

One thing won't change. As you look around campus, you'll notice new banners that celebrate our "rich tradition of nontraditional thinking." This signage, featuring faculty across the disciplines, is a tribute to the culture of innovation that supports daring exploration, scholarship, and creative expression at UC Santa Cruz. This hallmark of the UCSC experience is more important than ever.

There will be more good news, including an update on The Campaign for UC Santa Cruz, but for now, welcome back to the most beautiful university in the world. Don't forget to take a moment to appreciate the redwoods, the meadows, and our stunning views of Monterey Bay.