Impact and achievement close 2022 on a high note

Tuesday, December 20, 2022
Dean Dillon outside Murkland

Dear members, alumni and friends of the College of Liberal Arts,

I hope everyone is keeping well and looking forward to a replenishing break during the holidays.

We had another hugely vibrant semester! It’s always uplifting to see our beautiful campus humming with so much life even as the fall colors have long given way to the bright coldness of winter. Amid all the exciting classroom learning and out-of-class impactful student experiences, faculty research and artistic productivity continued apace, with high-quality books, articles, exhibitions and performances showcasing the breadth of faculty expertise.

...a career networking workshop included the generous and enthusiastic participation of 10 highly impressive alumnae from a range of sectors...

We are in our second year of activity through the Global Racial and Social Inequality Lab (GRSIL) and I am more than pleased with the range of its work. This past semester its activities included a social inequality student forum, a monthly faculty research reading group and access to a new course for faculty on “Teaching Toward Intercultural Competence.” Nine students will engage in paid exploratory research this January term, mentored by faculty members as part of our January Research Opportunity Program. We are already planning for our paid summer internship program which places Liberal Arts majors at New Hampshire non-profit organizations, and we are looking forward to again collaborating with New Hampshire community colleges for our annual Spring Symposium.

The College hosted its second “EMPOWER: Women Leaders in the Professional World” event in October, a career networking workshop that included the generous and enthusiastic participation of 10 highly impressive alumnae from a range of sectors and 20 eager students. It was a wonderfully engaging event and inspiring to see the dynamic interaction of alums and students.

We were also honored to host the annual Rutman Distinguished Lecture Series on the American Presidency, this year featuring Professor Fredrik Logevall; the annual Heilbronner Lecture with Mr. Joseph Samuels (video here); and the Oyster River Community Read lecture by Professor Eric Klinenberg. We love to see the many alumni and community members who join our faculty and students for these fabulous talks and the associated socializing and good conversation.

Our Liberal Arts graduates continue their remarkable records of high accomplishment...

Our Liberal Arts graduates continue their remarkable records of high accomplishment – featured again this year as inductees into UNH’s Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame and the Diversity Hall of Fame, and as the winner of the UNH Social Innovator of the Year Award: Alex Freid ‘13 (philosophy and political science), founder of the Post Landfill Action Network.

I am always so delighted to meet our alumni – they are everywhere! I was thrilled to be in NYC in late October for a timely, interactive panel on the role of the UN featuring our Liberal Arts alums Susan Mercandetti and Ambassador Martin Kimani (Kenya’s ambassador to the UN), and political science professor Alynna Lyon. In November, I had the honor of moderating a panel in Washington, D.C., on the topic of difficult conversations with our alum (Ret.) General Lori Robinson and Kelly Ayotte. And Liberal Arts graduates were also among the panelists at the Boston Executive Forum on the future of health care. I also enjoyed individual meetings with several of our Liberal Arts alumni. Consistent across all these visits is the pride, loyalty and affinity that alums have for UNH and for each other.

Closer to home, I traveled to New Hampshire’s North Country, for dinner and conversation in Gorham where, as part of President Dean’s New Hampshire Listening tour, we heard from community members about opportunities for expanding UNH’s partnership and presence in the region. Our New Hampshire Arts Initiatives were also in full swing this past semester, the highlight being the Arts on the Road concert at the iconic Portsmouth Music Hall in early November.

As we wind down for the winter break, many of our students and faculty are double-checking their passports as they will soon be heading overseas to our faculty-led study abroad destinations – Belize, Rome, London and Cuba for January term – and for our spring semester programs in Budapest, Dijon, Granada and London. Bon voyage to all!

Warm wishes to everyone for a wonderful winter break, and good health and much joy in 2023. I am deeply grateful for the many ways in which you contribute to the success and reputation of the College of Liberal Arts.


Michele Dillon
Dean, College of Liberal Arts