The academic year 2013–14 was a time of remarkable growth and achievement at Seattle Pacific University — including the development of a long-range strategic plan, impressive faculty and student scholarship, the construction of a new residence hall, and a wide-ranging engagement on the part of the University in our city and around the world.
It would be inauthentic, however, if we didn’t acknowledge the tragedy that struck the SPU campus in the last two weeks of the academic year, as this report was being completed.
Although it was something we prayed would never happen at SPU, one professor described this as “our darkest day and our finest hour.” To me, he meant that Seattle Pacific community members responded by doing what came naturally: gathering together, praying together, caring for one another, and trusting God. I believe that students, faculty, and staff showed the depth of their faith and character, and in the process they have been beacons of God’s love to the world.
On June 13 and 14, I had the privilege of participating with Seattle Pacific’s Class of 2014 in the annual Ivy Cutting and Commencement ceremonies. This is always a significant time for graduates and families, but this year was special. More than ever, we wanted to celebrate together our remarkable students, their academic achievements, and their dreams for the future. These graduates are highly competent young people who want to use their education to serve others. They are a tremendous antidote to the pain and suffering in our world.
This report highlights the extraordinary accomplishments of the SPU community in 2013–14. I hope you will read it and celebrate with us. I believe SPU’s future has never been brighter.
Daniel J. Martin