Greetings from President Lawrence, Spring 2019

Photo of President Pareena LawrenceDear Hollins Family and Friends:

Like the myriad trails winding through the Blue Ridge Mountains that surround our campus, each Hollins student blazes her own unique path of self-discovery that culminates in lifelong engagement with the world.

This adventurous spirit is the heart and soul of Hollins’ mission—and it is this same force that drives our new strategic plan, recently approved by our Board of Trustees.

Reimagining the Hollins experience for our students will help guide our beloved liberal arts university toward a stronger future. Meeting the needs of the 21st-century learner begins by altering how we think about the majors we offer and the educational experiences that support our students. At Hollins, we have recently approved several new majors, minors, and concentrations. For example:

  • A new data analytics minor is preparing our undergraduates to work in a data-driven world in which data scientists are being sought by every major company and organization. Students learn the cutting-edge, open-source software used by industries today.
  • Our redesigned business major emphasizes the development of women as leaders and innovators and features the new Institute for Entrepreneurial Learning (IEL), which focuses on developing an entrepreneurial outlook across all disciplines. (IEL Director Karen Messer-Bourgoin talks about the institute’s philosophy and goals in this video interview.)
  • The establishment of a major in public health teaches students to recognize, assess, and address health issues on individual, community, and global levels.
  • The addition of counseling as a concentration within the psychology major will better prepare students for graduate work in those fields, as well as increase student opportunities for skills development.

To help our students navigate their options and personalize their journeys at Hollins and beyond, we have developed two important initiatives—Life Skills and Career Development, and Advising 360— which you can read about in this newsletter. Both involve all members of the Hollins community: parents, faculty, administrators, trustees, and alumnae/i. More than ever, I am excited to ask you to join me in creating a distinctive, vibrant educational and professional experience that will empower our students to lead Lives of Consequence.


Pareena G. Lawrence