From the President department heading
Illustration of John C. Bravman, President
Illustration: Joel Kimmel
The Power of Interdisciplinary Education
As I write this, we’ve made it to the other side of a history- making year. For the first time in Bucknell’s 175 years, we mounted three Commencement ceremonies. By segmenting our ceremonies and limiting the number of guests, we could give our Class of 2021 seniors the personal graduation experience they and their families deserved. We look forward to celebrating the Class of 2020 in person, as well.
And now we look ahead to what is shaping up to be a superlative incoming Class of 2025. We easily surpassed our May 1 goal of enrolling 1,000 new students, with 62% planning to enter the College of Arts & Sciences, 19.2% favoring engineering and 18.8% intending to study management, as of May 12.

These students will benefit from more transformative experiences in the classroom and beyond than ever, thanks in part to the fact that their colleges will be led by deans who hold endowed positions that support rich experiences for students and faculty: Raquel Alexander is the Kenneth W. Freeman Professor and Dean of the Freeman College of Management, and Patrick Mather is the Richard E. Garman Dean of Engineering. Thanks to a significant gift by Glen Tullman ’81, we now also have the Douglas K. Candland Dean of Arts & Sciences, which is held by Karl Voss. The chair is named for Glen’s mentor, with whom he has stayed in close touch all of these years.

For anyone who graduated 20 years or more ago, Professor Doug Candland is a legendary name. Not only did he found our Animal Behavior Program more than 50 years ago, but he was instrumental in establishing environmental sciences at Bucknell.

Reflecting Doug’s and Glen’s dedication to the common good, $2.5 million of the $6 million gift will support the Douglas K. Candland Fund for Civic Action. Another $3 million will allow the dean to explore new programs in the arts and sciences. The remaining $500,000 will endow the Animal Behavior Lab. (Read more about Glen, Doug and the gift on Page 59.)

An economics major, Glen thrived on the myriad options that a liberal arts education affords and found inspiration in Doug’s classes and camaraderie with other students fascinated by primates in the Animal Behavior Lab.

Likewise, another student of that era, Bucknell Trustee Steve Holmes ’79, P’06, P’08, P’12, made the most of the University’s rich mix of traditional liberal arts offerings and professional programs, gaining an appreciation for the Impressionists and the art of throwing clay pots as well as his accounting major. The interdisciplinary opportunities Steve embraced, which included a Jan Plan term studying art and architecture in Europe, have enriched his life and informed his 30-year career in the hotel and resort vacation industries.

“As I moved through my career, a lot of what I learned was that there’s more to life than just what I was focused on. And that’s due to my liberal arts education,” Steve says.

From the moment they begin their Bucknell journey, the Class of 2025 will be able to experience the fullness of learning that Steve enjoyed. They’ll arrive as the new 79,500-square-foot home of the Freeman College of Management and the Department of Art & Art History receives its first students. In recognition of Steve’s generous support, the building is named Holmes Hall. (Read more about Steve’s experience on Page 25.)

The journeys of these two alumni illuminate the enduring power of inter-disciplinary education, which benefited both Steve and Glen. A lifetime of giving back to students, exemplified but not particular to Doug Candland, is another hallmark of Bucknell, where strong mentorship abounds. Doug invested in Glen Tullman’s life as a student, and look what’s happened 40 years later — an amazing commitment that will benefit the University and generations of students to come.

Copy of John C. Bravman signature

John C. Bravman