New Year, New Term

Dear students and colleagues,

Happy New Year! I hope you enjoyed a fun-filled holiday break with family and friends and are eager to embrace the start of winter term. 

I couldn't be more excited to be back in the classroom this term teaching Intro to Combinatorics, a subject that has brought me so much enjoyment throughout my life and career.

Speaking of careers, it's hard to believe that there are less than six months remaining in my presidency at Dartmouth. It's been the greatest pleasure for Gail and me to be part of this vibrant Dartmouth community and to spend so much of our time over the last decade working with all of you. 

We've traveled to more than a dozen different countries and met with tens of thousands of alumni. But our most memorable times have come from consulting with and learning from our faculty and staff colleagues and engaging directly with students. Whether it's been in class, during office hours, over coffee at Dirt Cowboy, breakfast at Lou's, or dinner at the President's House, or on walks around Occom Pond, Gail and I have relished every moment of connection with members of our campus community.  

And as I reflect on all we've accomplished during our time together, I am reminded of just how much my interactions with all of you have informed and influenced those outcomes. So many of the ideas we've implemented originated with you or were strengthened because of your input. 

Outstanding examples of the effectiveness of our collaborations are visible all across campus. One that immediately comes to mind is the evolution of the DEN into the Magnuson Center for Entrepreneurship in the West End. That seed of an idea, which started as a pilot program the very first year of my presidency in response to student requests, has grown into a hub of innovation that draws people in from every corner of our campus, connects them to our network of entrepreneurial alumni, and is an engine for new ideas – and new businesses – making an impact in the outside world.

We've been through our fair share of difficult times, too, from navigating the global pandemic, to honestly acknowledging our past through historical accountability, to taking steps to address ongoing struggles with mental health in our own community. Your voices and input have been especially crucial during these times, in many cases helping us change course as you brought us new ideas.  We've moved through all of these times together, always focused on improving the institution to the best of our abilities and, in the process, learning more about ourselves and who we want to be. 

The upward trajectory we are on belongs to all of us, and I am so grateful to be starting the new year leading an institution with partners that are so heavily invested in its success. 

Even as my presidency winds down, our work continues in earnest. 2023 promises to be another great year for Dartmouth, as we renovate the Hop, launch our new DEI plan, and inaugurate a talented new president. And I hope the new year and this new term will also bring with it a renewed commitment to yourselves, to your studies, and to each other. 

We are always better together, and I will cherish every opportunity I have in my remaining time as president to work alongside you as we strive to be the very best we can be.


Philip J. Hanlon '77