Dear Graduates,

I wanted to update you on the progress we’ve made with the name change process and our application for university status.

Because of the huge disruptions in higher education and the extremely challenging market conditions in which we need to attract students, we have decided to put the name change conversations on hold.

This conclusion has been informed by conversations I've had with many of you, and research, including a comprehensive survey in which you were invited to take part. A special committee of alumni, trustees, and student, faculty and staff members has taken all of this information and studied a potential name change over the past year. And so moving forward, if the Commonwealth awards us university status, we will be called Delaware Valley University in the immediate future and will re-evaluate a name change in the next two to three years. In its March 7 meeting, the Board of Trustees approved these decisions.

Which leads me to my next update: last semester, we submitted our formal application to the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) for status change to become a university. We had a very successful site visit by members of the PDE evaluation committee on March 5. The next step in the process will be the committee’s report of their findings to the secretary of education, who in turn will make a recommendation to the governor. We are hopeful of hearing on university status in the near future.

As has been the intention, status change for the institution does not mean a shift in emphasis on teaching. We will remain the student-centered, teaching focused institution that you are familiar with, dedicated to providing students with small class sizes, student-faculty collaboration, experiential learning and research opportunities. Being a university will have an impact on our brand, however, and will allow us to attract a wider range of undergraduate, graduate and international students. Whether you called this campus the National Farm School, the National Agricultural College or DelVal, it is a special institution with one guiding principle – to teach “science with practice.”

As always, if you have any questions please feel free to contact me. I look forward to seeing as many of you as possible at A-Day.

Dr. Joseph S. Brosnan