August 19, 2011
Dear Friend of Idaho State University,
Autumn is on its way, and all across campus, there are signs of the excitement that comes with new beginnings.
There are students, excited about the learning possibilities that come with a new semester. Some of them are seasoned, looking forward to completing their education and moving on to the next stage in life.
Some, our new freshmen, participated in an annual tradition Sunday as they walked through the Swanson Arch, symbolizing the beginning of their educational experience and entrance into the Idaho State University family. When they finish their educational journey, they will walk through the arch again, out into the world.
Our faculty members are ready to educate and train another generation of leaders. Many of them have been in laboratories and out in the field this summer, continuing research in many areas.
Recently, Eric Burgett, assistant professor in nuclear engineering, received two grants totaling approximately $2 million to develop advanced radiation detectors and measure fuel inside nuclear reactors. The grants will fund research in the Ballard building, a large research center purchased this spring. They are some of the first of many projects that this extraordinary facility will attract.
Along with readying the Ballard building for world-class research, Idaho State University employees have been busy over the summer with a major remodel of the Pond Student Union. Work continues, and, when completed, the result will be more services for students, including new food options in our food court and an ISU Credit Union branch.
We are ready for a new semester, and it's refreshing and exciting to see the support Idaho State University receives from the community.
This fall, local businesses will once again celebrate the return of Idaho State University students for a new semester at the second annual "Welcome Back Orange and Black, a Communiversity Event."
Students, faculty and staff are invited to Old Town Pocatello from 3 to 7 p.m. today to celebrate the relationship between the university and the community. There will be food, vendor booths, live music and other entertainment.
I am excited for another year filled with opportunities and successes.
Welcome back, and go Bengals!
Arthur C. Vailas, Ph.D.
President, Idaho State University