From the Arbor | News for May from Jerry Weakley
I recently had interactions with two members of the CAS faculty. As I came away from both of the short visits, I was struck by the extreme differences in the countenance of the individual faculty members with whom I had spoken. The first, I would say was extremely grim. The pressure of the final week of classes was firmly bearing down as was the immediacy of delivering final examinations to four separate classes. Adding to this apparent discomfort was the knowledge that soon they would be grading those examinations, calculating and recording final grades for every student in each of those classes and then finally, transmitting them to the Office of the Registrar . . . all on a deadline. I came away thinking how very fortunate I am to be on the administrative side of the house at this particular time of the year!
The countenance of the second member of the faculty, I must report, was extremely different. Dr. George Wiley, who has held forth on the CAS campus since 1977 B.C. (before computers), is in his final week in the classroom as a professor on the Baldwin City campus.
As I spoke with George, I sensed a very different combination of emotions. On one hand, he naturally seemed to regret that the close association with faculty colleagues and students that has been afforded by his role as a professor will most certainly change over the course of the next few years. But, on the other hand, I also sensed a calm and almost relaxed appearance that perhaps speaks to his looking to the future toward having more time to read, complete research, travel and just plain relax that have for the most part not been available over the course of the past 35 dedicated years of service to this University. Adding to the calm, no doubt, was the fact that for him, there would be no more tests and grading!
As the University as a whole speeds toward our two commencement weekends, it does so with the knowledge that it will be “graduating” not only George Wiley, but also other members of its faculty on multiple campuses toward new endeavors. As we search through most any dictionary, we find common definitions for commencement that include the words beginning and start. Several of our faculty members will commence new starts and new beginnings at the same time as do our graduating students.
It is appropriate here in the opening letter for this month’s Arbor that we take time to thank not only Dr. Wiley, but also all the other Baker faculty members for their dedicated service to the University and our outstanding students!
Access the current issue of the Arbor. I hope you will find in it something interesting, entertaining or informative that will reengage you with our great university!
Jerry Weakley, ’70, M.B.A. ’92