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From the President

To the Iona Community,

It is hard to believe this is already my fifth year as the president of Iona. It was an honor to be named Iona’s ninth president in 2019 given its rich legacy that brings together the inspiration of St. Columba, the determination of the Christian Brothers, generations of gifted faculty, and our alumni who have gone on to shape their communities and the world. While I was humbled by all that Iona had accomplished, I also saw enormous opportunity for what Iona could become.

The stewardship of dedicated trustees and the support of thousands of alumni provided a platform for Iona to meet the challenges that private, faith-based colleges and universities face.

We have met those challenges in myriad ways. We expanded our footprint to add a new campus in Bronxville and another soon to open in Westport, Ireland. We partnered with NewYork-Presbyterian to create a new school of health sciences. We created new cutting-edge spaces inside and outside the classrooms to foster student learning and community interaction. We started new club sports and performing arts programs, which are receiving national recognition. We established endowed faculty positions to support research and teaching and we started Gaels Go Further, a mentoring program that brings alumni together with students to provide guidance as they navigate their way to professional life.

Each of these initiatives plays a role in fulfilling a vision for Iona that aims to unleash the best of our community. Well-designed spaces and programs create new patterns of interaction that free the spirit of those who participate in them. We see our work as clearing the way for people to discover, learn, and express their best selves in ways that are worthy of the legacy of St. Columba and the Christian Brothers.

All along, Gaels have known that Iona is a special place. Now, more people outside Iona are taking notice. Most recently, The Princeton Review included Iona for the first time in its national publication of the “Best 389 Colleges.” The Wall Street Journal ranked Iona as the #66 best college in America, which included measuring us in a tie with Yale University as the #4 most recommended college in the Northeast by students. The WSJ also ranked Iona as the #8 Catholic college in the country and #1 for student experience in New York.

We do not chase rankings, but these rankings affirm what we prioritize at Iona—building a supportive community in which students have a positive experience and providing a transformative education that leads to success after graduation. The evidence for both of these outcomes is indisputable.

The values of intellectual curiosity, the pursuit of justice, and service to others, upon which Iona was founded, continue to guide all we do. As we grow, evolve, and educate students to meet the shifting demands of the world, we remain steadfast in what it means to be an Iona Gael.

Seamus Carey, Ph.D.
President, Iona University

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