Paul C. JohnsonAs you read this, I will have just completed my first semester at Mines. It was focused on meeting you and hearing your stories and aspirations for Mines. As a quantitative measure of that time (as all of the engineers and scientists reading this will appreciate), I’ve hosted 24 faculty and staff lunches and 23 student pizza parties (sometimes three in one day!), attended seven alumni receptions, met with six varsity sports teams, participated in three milestone events (M Climb, Alumni Weekend at Homecoming, and Parents and Family Weekend), opened two new buildings (Clear Creek Athletics Complex and the Starzer Welcome Center), participated in the Polar Plunge in Clear Creek and the Move Your Phi’t 5K run, and shook the hand of one superstar astrophysicist (Neil deGrasse Tyson, President’s Distinguished Lecturer). My wife Elyse has been involved in many of these events, including hosting breakfast for my CSM 101 class and 1965 graduates at our house on campus.

As full as my calendar has been, it has only covered a small slice of what happens on campus. In addition to classes and labs, every day there are guest lectures, varsity and club sports games, student group activities and meetings, student philanthropy events, and nearby Golden events such as the Ansel Adams exhibition at the Foothills Art Center—a collaboration between students in Mines’ Geology Department and Division of Liberal Arts and International Studies.

It’s clear that we landed at a university that values quality of life as highly as a hard work ethic and academic rigor. I believe that this sets Mines apart from other universities and results in graduates who continuously seek out new knowledge and experiences, embrace mental and physical fitness as a life-long priority, and are more engaged in their local communities and with their alma mater. From the stories you’ve told me, it appears that this has also been key to many of your successes.

Over the past few months, Elyse and I have enjoyed meeting our newest and most senior alumni and everyone in between and listening to your stories. I’d love to hear from you, so please share your thoughts with me at [email protected].

Go Orediggers!