There are so many of you that I wish I could see in person to talk to about the difficult decision I made last evening. Your handshakes, hugs, smiles, and encouragement have always lifted me up. It had been my plan to talk with all of you first, to share my decision to leave Castleton University as of May 31st. That plan was derailed during the board meeting last night, when the news leaked out before I was able to make my announcement. For that, I am sorry. You deserved to know first.
Yesterday and this morning I have received hundreds of emails, text messages, phone calls, and private notes in social media, all of which offer thoughtful words of gratitude and support. We have achieved so much together! In the span of three academic years we strengthened our financial position, developed new programs, formed new partnerships to increase student opportunities, opened two new locations, prepared the launch of the system’s first ever fundraising campaign, and welcomed a record-breaking class to campus this past fall.
What is most important now is that you, our students, remain the focus of our work and that we do not lose sight of this for even a moment. As Castleton moves into the future and our team members offer expertise and sound judgment in the reconfiguration and innovation of the Vermont State Colleges, one thing is certain: Castleton University will succeed! A mark of a good leader is to ensure a solid foundation upon which we can build a bright future. I inherited a great team with exceptional skill sets and insightful perspectives. Our faculty has inspired me to be a better leader. They have held me accountable while holding themselves to the highest standards on behalf of our students. Our staff has provided the guidance and support our students need to be successful. This is the most dedicated team of professionals I have ever had the honor of serving. I have full confidence that our team will continue to move the University forward, and to ensure that our Spartans enjoy this legacy for decades to come. This is The Castleton Way.
As you move through your academic programs and on to your chosen careers, I hope you will remember the lessons learned at Castleton University, a place where people genuinely care about your success. I hope you will think of me from time to time, and remember that I was once your biggest fan. I wish you all the successes you dream of. I will always remember your performances, your athletic achievements at Dave Wolk Stadium and Spartan Arena, open mic nights and other club events, gatherings at Huden, Fireside and Coffee Cottage. But most of all I will remember the way you treated each other, and the kindness you showed me.
In closing, Castleton has been my home, and all of you have been my family. I have enjoyed every minute that I have had here with all of you. I will truly miss you all. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you.
Dr. Karen M. Scolforo