A Busy Semester

Good morning!

What a busy semester it has been, and I want to thank you for all you do to make this University the very special place that it is. As we get ready for finals week, Susan and I will be hosting our traditional Midnight Breakfast for all students beginning at 10 p.m. tomorrow at Lakeside Dining. We hope you’ll come by and see us.

As we look back on this semester, we were thrilled to see students from our College of Communication and Information Sciences bring home high honors from the annual Public Relations Student Society of America Conference. UA’s Capstone Agency won Best Campaign and Best Tactic in the Student-Run Firm Awards, and UA’s PRSSA chapter won a national award for university service due in part to its impressive work on the Beat Auburn Beat Hunger campaign. During this year’s food drive, our students collected over 260,000 pounds of food, beating Auburn’s collection by over 27,000 pounds. This friendly competition continues our campus tradition of caring for those in the community around us.

team of students and faculty from our College of Engineering is having an impact beyond our borders. They recently collaborated with the Alabama Center for Insurance Information and Research to assess damage where Hurricane Irma made landfall in Florida. Data they collected should lead to better construction so homes can withstand damage from future storms.

Our research efforts are gaining national attention. The University was recently accepted into the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR), which focuses on research and training in atmospheric system sciences. This membership will expand our opportunities to be part of groundbreaking discovery to improve our understanding of the Earth. Another recognition we celebrate is that of Dr. Jared Allred, assistant professor of chemistry, who recently received an Early Career Research Award from the U.S. Department of Energy. This award will fund student-involved research to understand new materials.

And, to all of you, I am incredibly proud of our campus community for exceeding our goal in this year’s United Way campaign as we raised a record-breaking $454,929 for United Way of West Alabama. Thanks to all of you who donated for continuing to embody the Capstone’s giving spirit.

Finally, we celebrate the achievements of our football team in making it to the College Football Playoff for the fourth year in a row. We will ring in the New Year by cheering on the Crimson Tide in this year’s Sugar Bowl.

Best wishes to all of you as you close out the semester, and I wish you a safe and happy holiday break!

Roll Tidings,

Stuart R. Bell