President Robert L. Manuel > Notes from Rob > 2023-24 > A New Year

A New Year

Happy New Year, and welcome back to campus! I hope you had an enjoyable break and a good first day of classes. It’s great to see our Loop and Lincoln Park campuses buzzing with activity again. 

I’m happy to report we’re starting the new year strong. Based on preliminary data, our enrollment is currently ahead of last year’s winter quarter by more than 400 students, driven by growth in both our graduate and undergraduate programs. I will share final numbers after we have the winter census, and we can certainly applaud this positive news in the meantime. 

As we embark on a new year, let us also look back and celebrate additional achievements that earned national and local media attention for our university:

These are only a few highlights from the fall quarter, and we will build on this momentum. In case you missed some of the updates we shared last quarter, a Designing DePaul Digest email is coming your way soon, and you can always stay updated by visiting the Designing DePaul website. Congratulations to our faculty, staff, and students on your collective achievements, and thank you for your continued hard work. Please know how honored I am to work alongside you.

Looking ahead to the next quarter, here are activities you can expect to see move forward:

  • Areas across the university will host book club discussions focused on Designing DePaul and our path forward as a university. These sessions will feed directly into the development of strategic plans for each college, school, and administrative unit. If you haven’t seen the official Designing DePaul eBook yet, you can either download a PDF or access it via Kindle by following these steps:
  • The search for a new vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion will officially begin. I will share updates as we form a search committee, as well as opportunities for our community members to be involved throughout the process.
  • Mission and Ministry also is in the process of hiring a Jewish Life coordinator. We hope to fill this position very soon, and Mission and Ministry will share updates as they are available.
  • This month, our digital presence work also will officially kick off. We will share an announcement very soon about the firm we selected to lead this project, as well as next steps.

I will share updates on these initiatives, as well as others, at an online town hall this quarter. Please be on the lookout for an invitation with details to follow. 

While I have much hope for 2024 and our continued progress as we aim to be a national leader in higher education, I also acknowledge the complexity and challenges of the world we live in today. I ask you to begin this new year by renewing our commitment to foster civil, meaningful discourse.

Let us embrace our Vincentian values of human dignity, empathy, and compassion, particularly as we navigate challenging and emotional situations. I encourage you to continue engaging in the respectful exchange of ideas and to use DePaul’s guiding principles to navigate complex situations.  In addition, please remember the university created guiding principles for speech and expression to serve as a foundation for these conversations.

If you or someone you know is struggling and needs support, especially for concerns surrounding the Israel-Hamas war, the following services are always available:

Thank you as always for everything you do to make DePaul the special and caring community we value so much. I wish you​ an outstanding year ahead filled with peace and joy.