by Heather Taylor
It is hard to believe I am entering the final stretch of my time as the chair of the Society of College & University Planning (SCUP) North Atlantic Council. It feels like it has gone by fast and also feels like it has been a much longer time. Thank you, Covid! We all have a warped sense of time when we think of the last three years. We pivoted quickly to do many online events that brought us together in new and different ways, erasing the miles between us with a few clicks on our keyboards. We made lemonade out of lemons.
It gave new meaning to being together again. I have to give huge kudos and thanks again to our 2022 conference planning team and hosts at UMASS Amherst. Last year’s SCUP North Atlantic Regional Conference was fabulous. If you were one of the over 400 attendees that embraced all the in-person learning, sharing and networking – Thank you!
Last June, our NYC SCUP team planned and coordinated a great day-long symposium in the Morningside Heights neighborhood of New York City. Working with six institutions, the team orchestrated an amazing day of talks, tours and learning about this unique community of academic institutions. Again, kudos to our planning team.
This fall, we celebrated the 200th anniversary of the birth of Frederick Law Olmsted (FLO) with two events – one at Wellesley College in Massachusetts and a second at Trinity College in Connecticut – two picturesque campuses that benefit from the brilliance of FLO. Talks, tours and receptions were planned with dynamic invited speakers. In January of this year I got Covid, my second round. I passed the time by reading the amazing biography of FLO by our Trinity speaker, Justin Martin. I highly recommend his book, Genius of Place – The Life of Frederick Law Olmsted. Once again, I can’t thank our hosts and event planning team enough.
Most recently we had a gathering in New York City, SCUP After Dark. Hosted by SOM, it was a first-of-its-kind event that could be replicated in other cities. We are thrilled and thankful for our great team of NYC volunteers!
This brings us to the planning efforts that began over a year ago – for the 2023 Regional Conference that will happen March 22-24 in Albany, N.Y. The chairs, Yvonne Kielb and Nasrin Fatima, have been extraordinary and we are in for a treat with our wonderful hosts: SUNY Central Administration, The Construction Fund and the University at Albany. Yvonne and Nasrin have penned a great summary of the event, so I won’t go into detail except to say we are very excited to have on offer some new programming. We are borrowing good ideas from other regions as a result of interaction we have been fortunate to foster with the chairs of the other regions. Please consider coming early to participate in a charrette-style planning workshop focused on a current SUNY planning challenge. You won’t want to miss our chapter’s first fundraiser which supports the Fellows Program, to be held at University of Albany on March 23. The SCUP Fund’s purpose and focus is on the development of next gen leaders in higher education with an aim at advancing integrated planning principles. In other regions, this event has become one of the favorites of the conference. Check out the SCUP website for details.
Each of these events are carefully crafted and involve efforts by our volunteers, our hosts and my fellow North Atlantic Council members and the SCUP central staff. The events are made possible by our amazing sponsors. It does truly take a village. The last three years have affirmed the strength of our SCUP community. Whether you are a seasoned SCUP member or first-time attendee, you are welcome. We are certain you will find a supportive network, a wealth of learning opportunities, and a community committed to continuous growth and supporting the personal and professional growth of its members. It is fueled by our curiosity and love of learning. Our community continues to thrive by welcoming all voices, views and the influx of the next generation. We are long range planners.
A huge thank you to the whole North Atlantic Regional SCUP Council: Adam Baacke, UMASS Lowell; Peter Bachmann, JCJ Architecture; Alfredo (Fred) DiMauro, Asnuntuk Community College; Jackie Falla, Elaine Construction; Nasrin Fatima, SUNY Binghamton; Mara Hermano, Boston College; Jillian Kavanagh, Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University; Yvonne Kielb, retired – SUNY System; Michelle Maheu, Wellesley College; Ludmillia Pavlova-Gillham, UMASS Amherst; Cliff Resnick, Hunter College; Jennifer Stone, RAMSA; Dennis Swinford, UMASS Boston; Chris Timmerman, Rickes Associates
Events to look forward to:
- ELECTION! It’s time to vote for the next chair of the North Atlantic Regional Council! Watch for your ballot in email.
- Want to be a part of the North Atlantic Regional Council – accepting statements of interest – watch your email!
- What are you doing on June 9? Don’t miss SCUP NA’s Spring Symposium in NYC – this year at Cornell Tech on Roosevelt Island! Watch the website for details.
Heather Taylor is campus planner/architect at Phillips Exeter Academy, and chair of the SCUP North Atlantic Regional Council.