Let me start by welcoming you back – or, if you’re new, to welcome you – to Queen’s. I hope you all had enjoyable summers with lots of opportunities for rest and relaxation, as well as plenty of time for fun. Though it’s tough to see the warm days waning, I want you to know that I am very glad to have you back on campus! While things do keep humming along here over the summer, this place does get somewhat quieter.
By contrast, nothing compares with the amazing energy that fills the air at the start of a new academic year: the feeling of freshness and potential inherent in everything, from new classmates and textbooks, to new courses, living arrangements, and extracurricular activities. And of course, it’s normal to feel a few nerves in the unknown, too. I started my academic career as a Queen’s student more than 35 years ago, and remain a professor (in the Department of History), so I know something about what you’re feeling. I hope you will go fearlessly into each new educational experience, tackling challenges as they come. That’s where you will do your best learning.
We have a busy year ahead of us. One of the focal points for me will be the reintroduction of Homecoming over two weekends in October. I hope you will take every opportunity to welcome our alumni respectfully as they return to campus to celebrate their love of this place—a love I hope that you too will develop in time and may already be feeling. I trust, too, that you will help me ensure that Homecoming is a joyful, fun, and safe celebration for everyone.
If you run into me on campus, please don’t hesitate to introduce yourself. There’s nothing I like more than meeting the students who make Queen’s what it is. You can also follow me on Twitter (I’m @queensprincipal). And if you find yourself with time between classes on Monday afternoon, tune into my radio show, Dark Glasses, on CFRC, at 101.9 FM in Kingston.
I hope you will all look out for one another this year. Every one of you deserves to thrive at Queen’s. Please know that if you ever need support, it will be there for you.
I look forward to a fun and challenging year!
My very best wishes,
Daniel Woolf, Artsci ’80, Principal and Vice-Chancellor