MESSAGE FROM MVILLE’S PRESIDENT, MICHAEL E. GEISLER VOL. V

One bittersweet annual event in any academic’s life, whether they are faculty, staff, or administration, is the moment when we watch another cohort of students cross the stage where our Commencement exercises unfold. On the one hand, we are proud of every single one member of the graduating class of 2018, confident in your success, sharing your joy and your family’s excitement at this first triumph which I am sure will be followed by many more. On the other hand, as each one of you descends the steps on the other side of that stage, you are taking with you a small part of every one of us, and of each other! We feel richer for watching you strike out to conquer your own individual empires, but poorer for the possible loss of a friend, an interlocutor, a questioner in our classroom, somebody who keeps us younger than our biological clock suggests and on our toes in terms of intellectual challenges. And yet – there is no reason it has to be that way: great schools are made by their alumnae and alumni as much as by their current faculty and students. For the past four years, we have been the custodians of the Manhattanville College that is now. But our time will pass. For the next sixty, or seventy, or eighty years, all of you will be the Trustees of Manhattanville’s future, regardless of whether you actually are on the Board or not. This is both an honour and a responsibility your degree bestows upon you. You can enthusiastically embrace it or you can shirk it, but you cannot escape it. Other than the military and farming, academic institutions are the oldest continuously existing industry in the world. When this Board of Trustees and this president will be long gone, you will be asked by future generations what you have done to preserve this magnificent institution, its values, and its history. Starting May 19, Manhattanville College, its resounding continued success or its failure, is your story, your narrative. Make it a good one!