As I walk across campus each day this summer, I am thankful for the canopy of shade offered by Trinity's towering oak trees. I can't help but think of that May day in 1952 when students, faculty, and community members moved Trinity to its new Skyline campus. These grand oaks would have been no more than seedlings, with the barest promise of shade.
The oaks have always been part of the physical experience of Trinity, steadily growing in stature and depth. So, too, has our commitment to help students develop knowledge, skills, and values through direct experiences inside and outside the classroom. Today, we call that practice "experiential learning." In fact, that pragmatic approach to applied learning in the arts and sciences has always been part of Trinity's tradition. This summer, that practice is in full bloom, as more than 12 percent of our student body is actively engaged in the pursuit of meaningful undergraduate research, internships, and study abroad around the world.
In the spirit of "red bricks, green campus," Trinity was known around San Antonio for saving living trees and providing them new homes. In the 1950s and 60s, the University transplanted a set of live oak trees that were removed from the Sears-Roebuck building site in downtown San Antonio (currently the site of the Central Library).
The breadth of activities is inspiring. Here are just a few highlights:
From China to Central America, from San Antonio to St. Louis, 240 Tigers are spending their summers making meaningful contributions to their fields of study and communities. We look forward to the culmination of all of their experiences during the Summer Undergraduate Research Symposium on Tuesday, July 24, from noon to 5 p.m. in the Center for the Sciences and Innovation.
Such engagement would not be possible without Trinity's exceptional faculty, whose commitment to furthering Trinity's tradition of experiential learning is as steady as the oak trees that grace our campus. While there is still plenty of summer ahead of us, I look forward to the enthusiasm and excitement that these students and faculty will bring back with them as we begin a new semester. Until then, I encourage you to learn more about these and other exceptional Tigers in this recent blog post.
As Trinity's chief storyteller, I love to share news about the University. But I also love hearing from you. Please feel free to contact me at TUPresident@trinity.edu.