Vice President for Admissions Announcement - December 2010

To:                 The St. Lawrence Community
From:              William L. Fox, President
Date:               December 14, 2010
Subject:          Vice President and Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid

With great admiration and much gratitude for the many dimensions of the St. Lawrence success story she has helped to shape, I share the news that Terry Cowdrey, Vice President and Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid, has accepted the invitation from Colby College in Waterville, Maine to become its next Vice President for Admissions as of June 1, 2011. I know how much she will be missed here and I also believe she and Matt will, in turn, miss this wonderful community that has been their home for 14 years. I have assured Terry that even as a Wesleyan alumna, her own Laurentian status is permanent, one she will carry for a lifetime.

As a St. Lawrence alumnus, I followed the recruitment and admissions progress with growing pride. As a candidate for the presidency, I read the search prospectus with great care and appreciated this paragraph: The St. Lawrence admissions staff is a highly successful and nationally respected team. Admitted student surveys consistently rate the admissions and financial aid process at St. Lawrence as intensely personal, sensitive, fair and authentic. Market demand for St. Lawrence has never been higher. Word-of-mouth testimonials among alumni, current students, current parents and college guidance professionals undergird the extraordinary growth in interest and appreciation of the St. Lawrence experience. Now, having been on campus for 18 months, I understand well the depth of experience, intelligence and devotion we enjoy in the admissions and financial aid team.

In the past decade, St. Lawrence has more than doubled the annual applications for admission and dramatically altered its acceptance rate to compare with the nation’s most selective colleges, ensuring that the best qualified students enroll and thrive here. Our best-ever graduation and retention rates, announced earlier this fall, begin with the admissions experience; Terry deserves our appreciation for her part and leadership in developing these positive results since her arrival on campus in July 1997 from Vanderbilt University.

The statistics, however, express only one aspect of her St. Lawrence tenure. I’d also like to commend Terry on her work as a mentor to colleagues in the Admissions and Financial Aid offices and as an inspirational role model for hundreds of students who give the campus tours, manage the daily correspondence, and greet the frequent visitors in behalf of St. Lawrence. She is regarded by prospective students and their families as a genuinely caring and wise person, exceedingly generous with her time. I also hasten to add there is no more enthusiastic Saints fan at athletic contests than Terry.

I thank Terry for all she’s done for St. Lawrence and for me personally. We will have other occasions in the spring term to honor Terry as she prepares for an exciting new adventure and fresh professional challenge.

Meanwhile, we will organize immediately a national search for a new Vice President for Admissions and Financial Aid. I am confident that the next six months will continue the highest levels of enthusiasm and success as we all work toward our goals for the class of 2015 that will enter in the fall. When I have appointed a search committee, I will communicate again about its members and its charge.