As a first year, the number of new people you meet can be intimidating. With all the classmates, faculty and people you encounter throughout orientation and the entirety of your time at Trinity, remembering everything proves a challenge.
The administrative faculty, on the other hand, contains people whose names you will hear throughout your entire college career. Knowing, understanding and remembering the positions of the administrators of the university will make your time at Trinity a much smoother experience.
Dennis Ahlburg, president of the university through this upcoming January, regularly attends sporting events, plays and recitals on campus and is an engaged member of the community. His office is open two hours per week for Open Door hours, during which students may drop by to express their concerns or meet the president.
“I encourage students to come see me,” Ahlburg said.
Ahlburg oversees the vice presidents by meeting with them formally every Monday at 9 a.m. In addition, the president meets with them individually on a weekly basis to cover essential information and recent developments.
“I oversee all the activities of this wonderful university . . . every moment something comes up,” Ahlburg said.
Recently Trinity has increased marketing efforts to boost student enrollment. Charles White, vice president for information resources, marketing and communications, oversees the marketing initiatives and he recently helped implement a strategic plan that seeks to increase awareness of Trinity.
Christopher Ellertson, vice president for enrollment and student retention, is responsible for leading student enrollment initiatives.
Lisa Baronio, vice president for alumni relations and development, keeps the alumni in touch with campus life, Trinity events and students.
“Our charge is to work with alumni and re-engage them with the university,” Baronio said.
These events include Making Connections, which usually takes place over winter break when students are in their hometowns and can develop relationships with alumni. In addition, Baronio raises funds with the alumni. Her job is to articulate how the alumni would like money spent, while Gary Logan, vice president for finance and administration, manages it.
Logan ensures that financial resources are aligned. He handles nearly everything from the budget for new construction projects to the compensation of faculty members.
However, the two names you will most often hear as a typical student are those of Michael Fischer, vice president for faculty and student affairs, and David Tuttle, associate vice president for student affairs and dean of students.
Tuttle is present at Student Government Association meetings, Conduct Board hearings and other university events. He is also often seen around campus, often seen training for the Rock’n’Roll Marathon with students, walking his dog, or hanging our with his children.
“Dean Tuttle is much more directly engaged with student issues, where my responsibility is the overall coordination of student affairs,” Fischer said. “On a day-to-day basis I’m typically meeting with department chairs and directors talking about the issues that come up.”
Despite the pressures and busy schedule that comes with such a job, Fischer appreciates the complexity and challenge of it all.
“I enjoy the variety of my job. Something new comes up every day that I can’t anticipate. It’s just an endless mix of interesting things,” Fischer said.
Should students wish to meet with any of the big names at Trinity, they need only to introduce themselves; despite their busy schedules, they are willing to meet and sit down with students.