Letter From the President

tiedens-2015-7The Merriam-Webster Dictionary offers three definitions of the word “community”: 1) a unified body of individuals; 2) society at large; and 3) joint ownership or participation. Over the past several months, I’ve learned that each of these definitions confirms that Scripps College is synonymous with the notion of community and that our strong community is a key ingredient of our distinguished heritage.

The Scripps College community is unified. Scripps College alumnae instantly enjoy the privileges of membership in a sisterhood that shares the values of academic excellence, empowerment, and equity. These values cross generational and geographic boundaries to unite Scripps alumnae through a range of social, intellectual, and professional activities, from book clubs to excursions to parenting groups, that extend the Scripps experience decades beyond the undergraduate years and miles beyond the campus.

Scripps’ community is shaped, in part, by its commitment to influence positive change on and off campus. The College’s history of activism and engagement is evident in community members’ visible and vocal participation in social movements as well as in behind-the-scenes volunteerism, advocacy, and civic service. Members of the Scripps community aspire to not only fight for social justice, but also to model it here on Scripps’ campus in the classrooms, residence halls, and public spaces where we live, learn, and socialize.

Our community is also characterized by joint ownership and participation. Student voices provide information and perspectives for College-wide decisions ranging from admission policies to construction planning to recruitment and hiring. This sense of shared ownership and responsibility continues as alumnae actively participate in the life of the College by serving as trustees, volunteers, and supporters.

The definition of community that I have found most apparent and meaningful at Scripps is mutually supportive. Scripps community members are sensitive, empathetic, and thoughtful about the feelings, needs, and experiences of others and this is never more evident than in difficult and stressful times when knowing you’re not alone can make all the difference.

As you explore this issue of Scripps, I encourage you to contemplate the many facets of the Scripps community that reinforce our strong, resilient, and enduring legacy and forecast a bright future.


Lara Tiedens