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Joining the Bryn Mawr community

July 1, 2024

The message below was sent on Monday, July 1, 2024.

Dear Bryn Mawr College Community,
Walking up the steps of Taylor Hall this morning, I had a simultaneous sense of starting anew and coming home. I am aware of the powerful history housed in these buildings, on these grounds, and especially in all of you — a history of which I am not yet a part. Bryn Mawr College is a remarkable institution with a complex history and a focus on academic excellence, access, and inclusion that prepares all of us for lives of meaning and purpose. The college’s mission and the layered ways so many of you are committed to telling its history and building its future are why I am here today.
I am reflecting on how many layers of my life took place not far from the college. Only one of my five grandmothers, all born in this area, went to college. I met some of my formative teachers, mentors, and friends at school and college in Delaware County. I have been thinking a lot about my grandmothers and their work in yarn shops, banks, offices, schools, and department stores in the area that - in part - made it possible for me to go to college and then go away to Sri Lanka on a Fulbright IIE fellowship, to conduct research in Buddhist organizations and hospitals, to spend time on board container ships and in archives, and eventually to write books about people and places they hardly imagined.
As I officially join you today, I am excited, grateful, and yes, a little nervous. As I shared in April, my initial plans include a lot of listening and learning about all the efforts that make Bryn Mawr a special and multilayered place. I will think about the college in its historical as well as local, national, and global contexts as I learn. I will ask a lot of questions. Please invite me to group meetings, student events, sporting events, and alumnae/i gatherings. I will be curious, honest, and straightforward. I will listen and collaborate with you as partners. I will do my best for you, as I hope you will continue to do for each other, across our similarities and differences, as we agree and disagree, in our work on campus and in our complicated world.
One thing you will quickly learn about me and my family is our love for ice cream. In that spirit, current faculty, staff, and students are invited to an ice cream gathering on Monday, July 8th, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. at Canaday Plaza. The President’s Office is also hosting lunches for current faculty and staff this summer so I can meet you and start my on-campus learning process. Please sign up if you are available.
Faculty opportunities on July 8th and July 17th  
Staff opportunity on July 29th
There will be more such gatherings in the fall. Please introduce yourself when we meet on campus, and be patient as I learn your names. My wife Deborah, our children, and the pet menagerie will join me on campus later in the summer.
Thank you for welcoming all of us as we add new layers to our family’s story and together add new layers to the College’s story in the months and years to come.

Wendy Cadge