What an exciting time for Virginia Wesleyan! Students are back and classes have started. Fall athletics are underway, and we hosted our traditional Batten Honors College Matriculation Ceremony for new Batten scholars and their families once again. As a vaccinated community, we are all enjoying a more normal and more fun start to the academic year.
Among the excitement is our recent announcement during the State of the University Address regarding our record fundraising and endowment growth. Despite the many economic challenges of the pandemic, thanks to a series of gifts, our endowment will grow to $123 million dollars this year. This growth sets up an incredibly strong and stable financial future for the University for decades to come. Words cannot begin to express our profound gratitude to our donors who are committed to growing a stronger tomorrow for students at Virginia Wesleyan University.
Throughout the past month, we have been busy meeting with old and new friends and finally hosting events long postponed by the pandemic. We recently recognized our faculty and staff members who reached service milestones in 2020 and 2021. On September 9, we will host Founders Day Convocation, including the annual Alumni Awards, followed by the dedication the beautifully modernized Susan T. Beverly Hall that evening.
With so much growth and positivity on campus, it's truly a great day to be a Marlin.