MSU Alumni Magazine - Spring 2017 Digital

President’s Message

Lou Anna K. Simon, PhD 2017-04-21 08:50:37

OUR COMMON SPARTAN BONDS A large university doesn’t persist over the course of more than160 years without accumulating lots of symbolic “treasures.” Some develop iconic status over the generations and help bind us to alma mater and to one another. Think Beaumont Tower, the Rock, and the Red Cedar! It can be compelling to view ourselves through the lens of these kinds of physical and cultural icons, as you’ll see in this issue. They take on rich meaning by capturing and representing stories and moments in time that create a common bond. While our shared experiences are important, our shared values and ideals—those that transcend not only time and location—are at the heart of what it means to be a Michigan State University Spartan. They’re key ingredients in our secret sauce. Spartans know it when they see it and feel it. It begins with our pioneer land-grant roots and the opportunities they have made possible over the years. It’s our passion for making tomorrow better than today and our earnest belief that each of us has the power to make that possible. It’s the vision that enables us to see the world both as it is and as it could be, and our tenacity to make the latter a reality. I like to say that it’s not just about what we Spartans do, but how we do it and why, that matters. Mission and method are essential to our identity—fostering innovative partnerships to discover and apply leading-edge knowledge to society’s great and persistent problems. This way of thinking and working are modeled every day by our more than half a million alumni around the world and our 12,000 faculty and staff members. They are part of the mentorship we provide our 50,000 students and the value we deliver to colleagues and communities. We are privileged to be part of Team MSU, to work together to advance the common good with uncommon will as generations before us have. I hope you’ll take time to read about such Spartans in these pages and online at Such extraordinary people give us the confidence to say, without equivocation: Spartans Will. Lou Anna K. Simon, PhD President, Michigan State University

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