Dear Denver Campus colleagues,
I am delighted to welcome you back to CU Denver, or to welcome you for the first time. The occasion of our 40th anniversary this year gives us pause to reflect on how far we’ve come. From our early days in an old tram car barn, we have grown into a dynamic and diverse urban campus, serving more than 14,000 students and awarding more master’s degrees than any other public institution in Colorado.
Even against the backdrop of the precarious state funding situation of recent years, we’ve achieved so much, a fact that speaks to the vitality of this campus community—and of the hard work and determination of so many of you. A few highlights:
- The brand new BS in architecture program is off to a strong start, with nearly 90 students enrolled this semester. And the College of Architecture and Planning’s newly refurbished second floor of the CU Denver Building has been transformed into a great new space with a gallery, exhibit area, studios and classrooms.
- We made significant progress over the summer on the construction of the new academic building at Speer Boulevard and Larimer Street, on track for completion by this time next year. This marvelous new facility is a tangible demonstration of our commitment to our students’ success.
- We have been working since last year to gain deeper insight into the CU Denver student experience in order to make life easier and more satisfying for our students. Beginning with the now-mandatory summer orientation for new freshmen students and continuing through new student convocation last week (at which our new mascot, Milo the Lynx, played a prominent role), I believe we’re off to a good start.
- Our development efforts yielded a record-high level of donor support for the Denver Campus this past year—including the largest gift in CU Denver history, $10 million for the Business School to establish the Jake Jabs Center for Entrepreneurship. Over the summer, CU Foundation fundraising staff transitioned to the university, a move I believe will allow us to better focus resources in order to address key development needs and achieve even better results for the Denver Campus.
- We’ve been working to better define CU Denver’s brand and raise our visibility and image through a new advertising campaign to launch next month. More info to follow soon.
I do hope you’ll join us for the second annual CU Denver Block Party, this Thursday, Aug. 22 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. We’ll be closing down Lawrence Street between 14th and 15th Streets to celebrate our growing campus and our downtown community—in a 70s theme—with music, food and fun activities like a ropes course and a rock climbing wall. You can also see for yourself why we’re so excited about the College of Architecture and Planning’s new space at its grand opening during the Block Party.
Again, welcome back! I am grateful to be a part of such a vibrant, caring, welcoming community, for whom the upcoming year holds so much promise.