Jayson Boyers, EdD - April 1, 2021
By passing along the narrow road they widened it, and while they went along, trampling on the rough ways, they went ahead of us. —Augustine of Hippo, Sermon for the feast of Saint Quadratus
Dear Members of the Rosemont College Community,
Spring is finally here. The air feels warmer with each new day. The days are growing longer thanks to daylight saving time. Flowers are sprouting and blooming. Birds are singing. I get such a sense of wonder at this time of year and the new life that springs from it. After all, this season is all about new life and rebirth as we embrace the Easter season.
As we know in higher education, this time of year also brings a busy events season. I recognize that in many ways as I approach my one-year anniversary that I am still new to Rosemont. I have yet to experience a “regular” year of campus events and traditions due to the pandemic and look forward to the days ahead when normalcy returns. This spring, I know our seniors will enjoy their final traditions on campus and eagerly await Commencement, even if these events are being modified for the pandemic.
But first, we will welcome Founders’ Day later this month.
When I first learned about Founders’ Day, I was rather struck by its meaning. I find myself grounded in its goal that the intention of this day is to honor both the historic and current founders of Rosemont. We know well about the historic founders. Cornelia Connelly founded the Society of the Holy Child Jesus, and the Society then founded Rosemont. We cannot forget our roots, and Founders’ Day is the perfect time to celebrate them.
There are those who blazed the trail, like Cornelia Connelly. She taught us that every individual learns differently and should have a unique approach to their education. She saw the spark of God in each individual. She encouraged us to “meet the wants of the age.” We say that often at Rosemont because it is central to our identity as a community.
Almost two years ago, I had an insightful experience walking along a new path. I attended a weeklong silent retreat in Tahoe, California. For seven days, 300 individuals gathered together, ate together, took walks, and quietly meditated without a word. We walked a shared path to quiet the world and just listen. Listening to the sounds nature makes, noticing what we walk past and miss, and understanding the trail we are on is meant to be traveled together. To be found together.
Once the trail has been blazed, it is up to the rest of us to widen it. We are all following the paths of those who came before us. But roads change and need to grow. We can’t just follow. There are times when it is not easy. There may be bumps in the road and times when our footsteps feel heavy. But we need to nurture and expand the road so the community can flourish. The road continues to get bigger by all of us uniquely leaving our steps along the way. Through our values we are able to widen the narrow road to meet today’s “wants and needs” and make room for others to join us on the path.
This is what it means to be a current Founder. Soon we will celebrate all the individuals at Rosemont who will be honored with a Founders’ Day award and are widening the narrow roads in their own ways. But let us not forget that we are all founders. We are the current founders. We all have the responsibility to carry Rosemont forward – to widen the road and move ahead. I need each and every one of you to bring forth your talents to make our community the thriving place that it is and will continue to be. We are truly building something great together.
Peace to you,
Jayson Boyers, EdD