June 6, 2024

Goucher End-of-the-Year Update

Dear Goucher Parents, Family, and Friends, 

I trust this note finds you starting a peaceful and restful summer. As we wind down the academic year here at Goucher, I have several updates to share with you.

First, I am pleased that this year, Goucher received the most applications ever in the college’s history. This includes applications from prospective students in 47 states and 107 countries. In fact, I’m happy to report that new students from 26 different countries will be joining us this fall in addition to the over 30 countries already represented on our campus already. I can also report that our student retention and graduation rates continue to rise thanks to the hard work of our faculty, student affairs, and student success teams who do the essential work of supporting our students during their time here at Goucher.

To bolster our student recruitment and retention, we recently received the largest gift in our 140-year history, a $55 million bequest from Goucher alumna Anica Donnan Rawnsley '51. This gift will sustain scholarships in future years and provide continued opportunities and support for Goucher students starting in 2026.

Meanwhile, we recognize that this year was an extremely stressful time for many of our students and their families. Whether it was political polarization here at home or the ongoing wars in Ukraine, Israel, and Palestine abroad, tensions have remained high across our nation and on our campus. Despite this, I am incredibly proud of our students who have chosen to engage in sometimes difficult dialog with others, attend lectures by guest speakers espousing viewpoints perhaps different from their own, and employ the critical thinking and research skills they are learning here at Goucher to dig deeper into the history and underlying issues that have brought us to this moment.

I am also mindful that the botched rollout of the new Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form by the federal government has caused enormous stress and uncertainty for many of our students and their families who count on this financial aid to pursue their dreams. Our superb Student Financial Services team has been working overtime to ensure that we do everything we can to assist our students through this incredibly frustrating process.

Despite these frustrations, we had much to celebrate at Goucher this year. It was a phenomenal year of growth and success for Goucher Athletics. Sophomore Tanise Thornton-Fillyaw finished third in the 800 meters at the NCAA nationals, becoming Goucher track and field’s first All-American and Goucher’s first First-Team All-American since 2005. Our Gophers also earned the most All-Landmark Conference selections in the college’s history, with student-athletes from tennis, golf, lacrosse, field hockey, soccer, basketball, cross country, and track and field chosen for first-team, second-team, and honorable mention Landmark Conference honors. In addition, the Goucher equestrian team won its 13th straight Zone IV Region I Title.

We are also fortunate to welcome several new staff members to Goucher. These include Mike Marshall, our new vice president for enrollment management and student success; Bea Hardy, our new associate vice president for the Goucher library and learning commons; Grace Lowry, associate vice president of human resources; Elizabeth Brentzel, our new registrar; and Dr. Terence Turner, director of housing. I am confident all will contribute mightily to improving the Goucher experience for our students, faculty, and staff.

I want to conclude by wishing all of you an enjoyable and restorative summer break. I look forward to seeing you back on campus in the fall and joining with you to welcome a larger and ever more diverse class of incoming students to the Goucher community.

Take care,

Kent Devereaux