Message from the President
The most important measure of our success as a university is that of our students—validating our mission and realizing our promise. There are many measures of success, notably academic. But success should also be measured when students leave NAU as fully formed, responsible citizens, prepared to take on the responsibilities that come with adulthood and ready to play constructive roles in their families, communities, and the world.
During the pandemic, Northern Arizona University has graduated 8,500 students, and more than 76 percent of freshmen continued on to their sophomore year. Nearly 6,000 are expected to graduate this spring. We know that persistence is one key indicator of student success. We have success in the continued pursuit of excellence—winning national awards, accomplishing athletic feats, volunteering, innovating, and becoming part of the fabric of their community. At a time when our students are managing the unforeseen challenges of a global pandemic, their dedication, commitment, and drive has been an inspiration to us all. They embody the Lumberjack spirit.
In addition to the work that occurs in the classroom, a large factor in student success is the social, emotional, and professional/career support that is part of NAU’s foundation. It is why we are here. The commitment of our faculty and staff keeps our students moving forward on the path to success.
In this edition of Backpack, you will read about the many resources available to students. From academic to counseling services, campus recreation to career development, a resource for internships and job opportunities and on off campus, social, career, and engagement opportunities, and the food pantry Louie’s Cupboard, NAU offers many options for students to tap into.
We continue to be vigilant about COVID-19, testing, and vaccines and we are proud that we have been able to continue classes safely, ensuring our students can graduate on time, while staying healthy.
As we approach the middle of the semester, I offer my sincere thanks for the support you provide our students. And, for the trust you have in NAU.