Welcome to the Centennial issue of St. Joseph’s College Magazine. Throughout this issue, we celebrate many of the significant events that impacted the College since its founding in 1916, as well as some of the people and activities that mark our 100 years of success as an institution of higher education.
Needless to say, it is impossible to include everyone and everything in this one issue. As I continue to meet with alumni and members of the community, I’ve discovered that your SJC story includes interactions and experiences that shaped your education and impacted your life. It is gratifying to know that the College has had such a positive influence on so many, and I hope that you will continue to share the living history of this great institution.
As I reflect on the importance of our Centennial celebration, my thoughts can be captured by three quotations. The first was written in 1864 by John Henry Cardinal Newman:
Growth is the only evidence of life.”
St. Joseph’s College has demonstrated 100 years of growth and is positioned to continue to grow for another century. The life of the College remains our students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends. While there have been a few bumps along the way, SJC has embodied the life of higher education through its growth in enrollment, development of programs, expansion of facilities, acquisition of resources and consistent contributions to the community in multiple ways. If Cardinal Newman was right, then SJC provides the world with an abundance of evidence!
The second quotation comes from the writings of Mother Marie Anne Blondin, the Foundress of the Sisters of Saint Anne. Like the Sisters of St. Joseph, this community dedicated much of its ministry to education. She wrote,
The deeper the tree sinks its roots in the soil, the greater the chance of growing, branching out and providing fruit.”
The roots of St. Joseph’s College can be traced to the founding of the College in 1916. Each year, the roots sink deeper and the tree grows stronger. As we prepare to begin another academic year and look back on the past 100 years, we see evidence of the meaning of these words from Mother Marie Anne, both literally and figuratively.
The metaphor of a well-rooted tree bearing fruit is appropriate for the College. As you will see and read in this magazine, we have ample evidence of the “fruits” of St. Joseph’s College. We see it in the remembrances of the past, but just as strongly in the activities and successes of today. While much has changed over the past 100 years, our core values have remained immutable. The College will always need to carefully respond to the challenges of modern times. But we do so boldly and confidently as we continue to deepen our roots and bear new fruit.
Finally, there is a Chinese proverb that says,
If you are planning for a year, sow rice; if you are planning for a decade, plant trees; if you are planning for a lifetime, educate people.”
With deep roots, a compelling mission of educating women and men to serve the common good, and the abiding support of our alumni and friends, St. Joseph’s College will continue to provide the highest quality education preparing its graduates for lifetimes of professional success and redemptive citizenship.
This could not have happened without each and every one of you. It will not continue to occur without your abiding faith and support in this great institution. Thank you for all you do for SJC!
Jack P. Calareso, Ph.D.
This article originally appeared in the Centennial Edition of St. Joseph’s College Magazine, fall 2016.