President's Dinner

Last night I had the opportunity to attend the President's Dinner at Carr's Hill put on by the 4th Year Trustees.  It was especially exciting, because, this is President Sullivan's first year at UVA.

Carr's Hill (home of the UVA President)

wouldn't you love this to be your dining room?

just lovely!

The three course meal was delicious.  It started with a mixed green salad, followed by Chicken Piccata with sides of Dauphinoise Potatoes, baked with gruyère cheese and cream and a fresh Vegetable Medley.  The dessert was  Chocolate Chambord Mousse.  
At the end of the meal, President Sullivan shared some of her wisdom and took questions.  In her speech, she emphasized the futures that lie ahead of us as UVA graduates and how we have all in some way made our marks on the University Community. 

I was also particularly impressed by her ability to answer student questions.  I will share my two favorites of her answers.  When one student asked what she hopes to accomplish as President, she explained that our previous President erected 134 new buildings in his twenty years at the University.  She explained that she hopes to focus much more on what is going on inside the buildings; many of our most esteemed professors are nearing retirement age, so she's hoping to hire new, young faculty members that are prepared to educate 21st century students.  Secondly, in response to a student question related to the allegations against former UVA professor Michael Mann's climate research, she spoke about the importance of academic freedom.  She explained that research by both faculty and students should be led by their natural curiosity, rather than what may be politically popular at the time.

Allie and President Sullivan

As a side note, it's been a hectic week!  I have an important midterm today, so aside from writing my posts, I haven't been doing as much blogging this week.  I promise that tonight I will spend some time checking out my usual reads as well as all the blogs of new friends that have recently stopped by my site!