A Vision for Innovation

The President’s Priorities Fund

College Innovation stat In October of 2022, our new president, Robyn Hannigan, received a major vote of confidence from the Ursinus community with the establishment of the President’s Priorities Fund. Inspired by President Hannigan’s vision of a more accessible, sustainable, and academically enriching future for Ursinus and its students, Chair of the Board of Trustees Joseph DeSimone ’86, H’99, P’12 established the new fund with a personal commitment of $100,000.

Another esteemed Ursinus alumnus, Joseph Rosen ’55, was also inspired to support President Hannigan with his own contribution of $100,000 to the newly formed fund.

The President’s Priorities Fund has been a critical resource for the new administration. During the last academic year, President Hannigan convened a College Innovation Council (CIC), inviting the Ursinus community to think boldly about new projects and initiatives that will advance the college’s three strategic pillars:

  • To provide every student with a personalized pathway to success.
  • To support and foster a genuine connection and sense of belonging within our college community.
  • To harness the power of external partnerships to raise the college’s reach and reputation.

The President’s Priorities Fund has ensured a funding source for projects arising from the CIC. The fund has also advanced work related to student retention and success as well as health and wellness.

Honoring a Legacy, Investing in the Future

Professor Scott Deacle, 1975-2023

With the flash of a smile and a burst of excitement, Scott Deacle could talk for hours with colleagues, investment gurus, reporters, and podcasters about all things finance. It was, after all, his area of expertise. But nothing at Ursinus matched his enthusiasm for seeing his students “play the market.” Deacle created an environment where students learned how to collaborate, think critically, debate, and compromise as they constructed the Ursinus College Investment Management Company’s (UCIMCO) investment portfolios.

The late, beloved associate professor of business and economics—who passed away unexpectedly in May—helped transform the Student Investment Club into UCIMCO, enabling student-analysts from any major to gain hands-on experience by managing three funds on behalf of the college.

Upon learning of Deacle’s tragic passing, the UCIMCO community knew they wanted to do something to honor his legacy and carry forward his commitment to the students of Ursinus. Several anchor donors made gifts to establish the Scott Deacle Memorial Endowed Scholarship and agreed to offer a series of matches to contributions from other members of the Ursinus community. There was considerable debate that Deacle might have objected to a named scholarship and would have instead preferred that the funds be given directly to UCIMCO for the students to manage. However, in the end, the decision was made to remember the unrelenting dedication that he had for UCIMCO by establishing the fund in his name.

Our Bears rallied, and now future students will forever benefit from the scholarship and Deacle’s legacy at Ursinus will continue for generations.