End of Semester Message from President Bell

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:

It has been another incredible semester, and as we close out the 2018-2019 academic year, it’s a good time to reflect on what we have achieved together. The University will confer over 6,000 degrees at commencement next week, and that means over 6,000 dreams were realized through the passionate pursuit of an education with significant future impact.

Just today, we were thrilled to learn the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program selected three University of Alabama students as Goldwater Scholars for 2019-2020. Beating Princeton, UA tied with both Harvard and Cornell and continues to be in the top three nationally for the number of program recipients. Currently, the Capstone has been honored with 56 Goldwater scholars. Congratulations to UA students Peyton Strickland, Ryan Tuckey and Thomas “Hank” Richards for the highly esteemed honor.

UA is also pleased to add two new Boren scholarship recipients to our list of outstanding student successes. New Orleans native Michelle DeGeorge will study in the Czech Republic and Nicholas Hayes of Memphis, Tennessee was selected to study in Tanzania. Both represent a spirit of civic service that benefits our nation.  Linguistic and cultural immersion abroad adds to the educational experience of our students. I encourage you to explore the hundreds of programs UA offers in locations all around the world through the Capstone International Center.

Earlier this week, it was a privilege to present Dr. Subhabrata “Subha” Chakraborti with the Burnum Distinguished Faculty Award, which is one of the highest honors bestowed on UA professors. Dr. Chakraborti is a professor of statistics for the Culverhouse College of Commerce in the Department of Information Systems, Statistics and Management Science. The prestigious award signifies Dr. Chakraborti’s steadfast dedication to his students and to research. We’re grateful for his service and significant contributions to the success of the University.

Congratulations to UA history professor Dr. David Beito and his wife, Dr. Linda Royster Beito, for recently receiving one of the nation’s highest honors. They received the gold prize out of more than 1,500 entries from the largest publishing trade association in the United States for their book, T.R.M. Howard: Doctor, Entrepreneur, Civil Rights Pioneer. This honor exemplifies the creativity and innovation of our faculty, who are helping us advance in substantial ways.

Finally, a hearty “well done” to the UA Adapted Athletics program, unquestionably one of the finest in the nation. Under the leadership of program director Dr. Brent Hardin and assistant director, Dr. Margaret Stran, the men’s and women’s wheelchair basketball teams are both national championsfor the first time in Alabama history. It is the 6th national championship for the women’s team and a back-to-back championship title for the men’s program. We’re very proud of the coaches, staff and students who represented the University so well through their efforts.

I’m honored to lead this great University. I’m so glad you chose UA as the place to begin your own legendary journey if you’re a student, or to help mentor and mold legends if you’re faculty or staff. Through research, creative activity and public outreach, we are changing the world. Susan and I wish you all the best, and we look forward to seeing those remaining on campus for the summer sessions and those enrolled for the fall semester.

Roll Tide!

Stuart R. Bell