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Barron To Penn State Alumni: ‘Thank You For All You Do’

As has become a staple of his first year at Penn State, President Eric Barron took to the Internet to send a message to the Penn State community. This time, however, instead of urging civility, or shutting down a group of alumni-elected trustees, it was to thank Penn Staters, especially alumni, for a successful first year.

“As my first year as president comes to a close, I want to thank all of you for being Penn State’s greatest ambassadors,” he says in a combined video and letter via Penn State news. “I want to say how much I appreciate your passion and pride … pride that is well founded.”

Penn State’s accomplishments in Barron‘s first year are diverse and impressive, and he’s happy to list them off. Applications are at a record high, research expenditures have against topped $800 million, and the university is tied with MIT in the number of STEM disciplines within the top 10 of funding, among other noteworthy strides.

The letter and video are below, and here‘s a more extensive question and answer with Barron following his first year.

Dear Penn State alumni:

Over the past year, I have met with thousands of Penn State alumni at receptions, meals and meetings in dozens of cities around the nation. I have stopped at your tailgates outside of Beaver Stadium. I have hosted hundreds of alumni at Schreyer House and other campus locations. I have read your letters and emails. This past weekend, I shook hands with about 7,000 of our newest alumni at Penn State’s Commencement ceremonies. As my first year as president comes to a close, I want to thank all of you for being Penn State’s greatest ambassadors. I want to say how much I appreciate your passion and pride … pride that is well founded.

Penn State excels in every aspect of our mission. Last year, we set an all-time record for applications (126,500), and this year we are beating that record handily. Student selectivity and quality are increasing significantly. The time students spend at Penn State is also marked by success. A Penn State education is ranked in the top 1 percent in the world. This year, an astounding 1,500 employers came to campus to recruit our students, who are sought after by leading companies. Our students and faculty have been honored with the top awards in the world. This is the fourth year of research expenditures of more than $800 million. In funding of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields, we are ranked second (tied with MIT) in the number of our disciplines that are in the top 10 in attracting research funding. Our student-athletes are also achieving success on the field and in the classroom.

These are powerful messages on how Penn State is performing. The breadth of our excellence in delivering on our mission is truly noteworthy.

I believe my job is to make this great university even greater. That’s the reason why I came back to Penn State, and it’s the reason I look forward to coming to work every day. You, as alumni, will always be an important part of Penn State, and I look forward to working with you to make our great university even greater.

Thank you for all you do.

Eric Barron


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About the Author

Ben Berkman

State College, PA


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