Undergraduate Academic Affairs

May 7, 2014

Message from Vice Provost and Dean Ed Taylor

Ed Taylor

Dear Friends of Undergraduate Academic Affairs,

Vice Provost and Dean Ed Taylor

Vice Provost and Dean Ed TaylorTony Grob

A wonderful juxtaposition is occurring around the University of Washington right now. Very recently, thousands of students committed to coming to the UW next year, representing the class of 2018, and very soon thousands will celebrate their undergraduate accomplishments through the tradition of commencement.

We celebrate commencement, the work and transformation of our undergraduates, and, as importantly, the beginning of this new phase of their lives. It is simply a marvelous time of year to be on campus and see firsthand the depth of the undergraduate academic experience. With it, we see the outcomes of our work connecting students to opportunities in which they can see what they learn in the classroom come to life in research, service, leadership, and international settings. We see students who are asking critical questions about society, scientific concepts, problems in our communities here and around the world, and more.

In this e-newsletter, I’m happy to share with you stories of the UW undergraduate experience. These students are doing more than making sure they get the right classes to complete their majors. They are taking a deep dive into the UW and availing themselves of as many opportunities as they can while they’re here. By doing so, they are preparing to make their unique contributions to our communities.

If you find yourself on campus this spring—maybe to learn about student discovery at the Undergraduate Research Symposium, hear stories of service at the Spring Celebration of Service and Leadership, applaud an undergraduate artist’s final music or dance performance, or cheer on a student-athlete at her last UW game or match—think of the meaning of that moment. You are witnessing the culmination of many years of preparation; dozens of months of persistence; hundreds of weeks of focused, critical thinking; several thousand hours of creative input; and an infinite amount of heart. It’s all being expressed on campus right now.

After UW’s Commencement on June 14, our graduates will enter a new phase of their lives and move on to the beginning of their careers, graduate school, or service in any number of ways. Over the summer, UAA’s First Year Programs will begin the cycle anew, welcoming our newest students at advising and orientation sessions throughout the summer and setting them on solid ground for the next several years.

We make a commitment to students and their families that the UW undergraduate experience is transformative. As a public institution, we honor our promise to the public by ensuring that undergraduates experience rigorous coursework, have opportunities to engage in discovery, and prepare future graduates for the world ahead. Again, it is simply a marvelous time of year to be on campus.


Ed Taylor
Vice Provost and Dean
Undergraduate Academic Affairs