Saint Xavier University President Judith A. Dwyer, Ph.D., announces she will leave after end of academic year
SXU Board of Trustees to establish search timeline
Read an interview in the Southtown-Star with SXU President Judith A. Dwyer, Ph.D., about her decision not to seek another term after the academic year.
Chicago (Nov. 17, 2008) Saint Xavier University President Judith A. Dwyer, Ph.D., announced today that she will not seek a third term as president.
"It has been a privilege to serve as President since October 2003," President Dwyer said in a message to students, faculty and staff. "I believe that a great deal has been accomplished and that the strategic direction for the University has been established. I am deeply grateful for what we have achieved together to advance Saint Xavier University."
Under her exceptional leadership beginning in 2003, President Dwyer led the effort to develop and implement The Power of Eight, a comprehensive set of strategic directions to serve as guideposts for the future of Saint Xavier University. As part of the strategic vision and the master campus plan, she oversaw the design and construction of Illinois' first LEED Gold-standard university building in 2006, with a second award winning facility completed in 2008.
Through generous donations of real estate, the University acquired a significant piece of property along West 103rd Street in Chicago, including Gilhooley's Grande Saloon and the Driehaus Center, as well as additional land on the Orland Park campus. The University also purchased seven other properties and opened a downtown location at the Chicago Bar Association, significantly expanding the Chicago campus.
During her tenure, President Dwyer has built an excellent team of senior leaders. This included the creation of the Provost position, the addition of new offices and leadership for Mission and Heritage, University Relations, and Information Resources and Technologies, the establishment of advisory councils for the five college/schools and the library, and the initiation of work with the Association of Governing Boards to develop best practices for the University's Board of Trustees.
President Dwyer spent significant time and energy raising the visibility and profile of the University. This included a comprehensive media and marketing plan with campus lectures by former Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, General Colin L. Powell, and Nobel Peace Laureate Elie Wiesel. Efforts to improve communications included the creation of a community and government liaison position and the initiation of the University's daily electronic news, Saint Xavier Today.
Several important academic accreditations occurred during her tenure, including the two-year self study process and report which resulted in the University's successful reaccreditation by the Higher Learning Commission in 2008.
President Dwyer also put a renewed emphasis on fundraising, having raised in excess of $33 million dollars during her tenure, a record for Saint Xavier University. Other impressive figures during this period include a 17 percent increase in undergraduate FTE enrollment, a 44 percent increase in undergraduate applications, and a 55 percent increase in resident student enrollment.
The SXU Board of Trustees will establish a timeline and process in the near future for a national search for the next president of Saint Xavier University.
"President Dwyer's accomplishments have opened a new era for Saint Xavier University," said Thomas E. Chomicz, SXU Board of Trustees chair. "On behalf of the Board of Trustees, I sincerely thank her for her extraordinary leadership."
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Founded by the Sisters of Mercy in 1846, Saint Xavier University was the first Mercy college in the United States and is Chicagoï¿½s oldest Catholic university. Serving approximately 5,700 students at its campuses in Chicago, Orland Park and its Loop location, the University offers 35 undergraduate majors; more than 40 graduate program options in arts and sciences, business, education and nursing; and a variety of program options in continuing and professional studies. Recognizing Saint Xavierï¿½s excellence in education, U.S. News and World Report has ranked SXU consistently among the Best Colleges in the Midwest.