May 2018

Dear Parents,

Another academic year (F&M’s 231st!) is coming to an end as students finish up final exams and papers this week and our seniors graduate next weekend. There are many changes ahead as we bid farewell to President Porterfield later this month and welcome the Class of 2022 in August.

In this time of transition, many of us here have been reflecting on the College’s numerous accomplishments since President Porterfield arrived seven years ago in March 2011.

These achievements will be featured in the Spring Issue of Franklin & Marshall Magazine, appearing in your mailbox and online later this month. I also will provide updates about the presidential selection process in coming issues of the Parents Newsletter.

All my best,

Maura Condon Umble '83
Director of Parent Relations and Campaign Initiatives


F&M Chapter Events Newsletters -- Coming Soon

The F&Mily is alive and well across the country and around the world! We encourage you to participate in F&M chapter events in your area.

Beginning May 9, F&M parents who reside in one of our designated regional chapters will begin to receive bimonthly e-newsletters, called F&M Connections, that outline upcoming College events in your area. We are taking this step to ensure that you feel invited and welcomed at these fun F&M community events.

With the help of regional volunteers, my colleagues in Alumni Relations create a variety of compelling cultural and social programming in each of our 24 regional chapters. These events provide an opportunity to mix and mingle with fellow F&M parents, alumni and friends. And, of course, your students are welcome, too!


Last-Minute Commencement Details

F&M’s Commencement Weekend is right around the corner, May 11-12!

If your student is graduating May 12, I urge you to read all the details on the Commencement Website. Here you will find information about our speaker and honorary degree recipients, the schedule and locations for all weekend events, and an FAQ page that covers everything from parking to watching the ceremony online.

We look forward to a terrific weekend!


Summer Renovations On Campus

In the coming weeks, our outstanding Facilities and Operations staff will hit the ground running on summer renovation projects. In addition to continuing to oversee work on the Susan & Benjamin Winter Visual Arts Center, which is set to open in time for the fall 2019 semester, they have many projects on campus to keep the facilities, grounds and residences in top shape.

Continuing its work from last summer, Facilities and Operations resumes the College’s residence hall updates, ensuring that our students have comfortable places to call their home away from home during the academic year. Work begins May 7 and projects will be completed by Aug. 10, in time for our students’ return.

Plans include an updated HVAC infrastructure in Marshall-Buchanan Hall and the creation of six gender-neutral bathrooms in Dietz Hall. Last summer, Schnader and Weis received additions of four and three private, ADA-compliant, gender-neutral bathrooms, respectively.

As for other improvements around campus, Stager Hall will receive classroom upgrades on its third floor, the Klehr Center will get a paint refresh, and Tylus Field's turf will be replaced.


Important Fall Dates

The spring semester hasn't yet officially completed, but many of us at the College are in the midst of plans for the fall 2018 semester. Some important dates to keep in mind:

  • International Student Orientation
    Wednesday, Aug. 22 - Friday, Aug. 24
  • College Houses open for first-year students
    Saturday, Aug. 25
  • New Student Orientation
    Saturday, Aug. 25 - Tuesday, Aug. 28
  • On-campus housing opens for sophomores, juniors and seniors
    Beginning Sunday, Aug. 26, at 9 a.m.
  • Fall semester begins
    Wednesday, Aug. 29
    Note: Classes will be held on Labor Day (Monday, Sept. 3)
  • Day of Dialogue (no classes)
    Wednesday, Sept. 26
  • Fall break
    Begins Friday, Oct. 5, at 4:30 p.m.; ends Wednesday, Oct. 10, at 8 a.m. 
  • Homecoming & Family Weekend
    Friday, Oct. 26 – Sunday, Oct. 28; visit this page for more information.
  • Thanksgiving recess
    Begins Tuesday, Nov. 20, at 6:05 p.m.; ends Monday, Nov. 26, at 8 a.m.
  • Fall semester classes end 
    Monday, Dec. 10, at 4:30 p.m.
  • Winter recess begins
    Monday, Dec. 17

For more details about the upcoming academic calendar, and to see dates through spring 2021, visit the calendar web page


Emerging Writers Festival Recap

Since 2002, the Franklin & Marshall College Department of English’s marquee event, the Emerging Writers Festival (EWF), has helped launch the careers of 85 writers. This year's event, which took place April 4-6, offered another group of exceptional authors.

This year’s writers were Raymond Antrobus (poetry), Tessa Fontaine (nonfiction), Sarah Gerard (fiction and nonfiction), Chinaka Hodge (poetry and playwriting), and Mandy Berman ’09 (fiction), who served on the EWF planning committee her junior year at F&M.

“This is the second year we’ve invited an alum,” Erik Anderson, writer in residence and director of the festival, said. “When we invited Indra Das ’08 last year, it was like a reunion. So long as we continue to have F&M alumni publishing books, we’ll keep bringing them back.”

To learn more about the annual EWF, visit the festival webpage or read an interview that we conducted with Erik Anderson last year.


Start a Tradition

We can't thank you enough for all the support we get from parents, both through your volunteerism and through your generous financial contributions. When you make a gift to the College, it is a vote of confidence for all that F&M does to support and elevate your students and their educational experiences. The College’s fiscal year is quickly coming to a close, so, if you haven't already, please make your gift to the Franklin & Marshall Fund by June 30.

We hope that once your students graduate and find their places in the world, they will continue this tradition of philanthropy as F&M alumni. Their participation as alumni means a great deal, both to our students and the College's standing.

Throughout their final year, students are informed about the importance of philanthropy through Senior Campaign, an effort that encourages seniors to follow in the footsteps of alumni and begin their giving at F&M. Students are able to learn about why their gifts matter, how participation will impact the value of an F&M degree, and what it means to be an F&M alum. 

Many students designate their first gifts to support their favorite campus groups, organizations or teams. Students also may choose to give in honor of a favorite or influential professor. Many student-athletes give to support Diplomat Athletics. This simple gesture is such a wonderful way to begin a lifelong relationship with the College.

If your student is able, we hope that he or she will commemorate the final year at F&M with a departing gift -- the first among what we hope will be many over the course of a lifetime of support and involvement with their F&Mily.


Upcoming Regional Chapter Events for Parents and Alumni

May 15
F&M Washington D.C.'s Second Annual Chapter Open House
Washington, D.C.

May 17
F&M San Francisco Happy Hour
San Francisco

May 17
F&M Philadelphia's Second Annual Chapter Open House

May 20
F&M Day with the Sugar Land Skeeters
Sugar Land, Texas

May 22
Reception and Program with Professor Joel Eigen
New York City

See even more events here!


Story 3/5/2020

March 2020

Monthly Video – Check it Out! Jason Cone, who graduated from F&M in 1999,  is now the chief...

Read More
Story 2/6/2020

February 2020

Monthly Video – Check it Out! Have you heard of K-Pop? Some F&M students formed a K-Pop dancing...

Read More
Story 1/9/2020

January 2020

Monthly Video – Check it Out! F&M's Dr. Annalisa Crannell teaches classes ranging from Calculus...

Read More