Over 350 faculty, staff, board members, and religious leaders from 22 schools around the country gathered on Marian University’s campus from June 7-9 for the 2016 Association of Franciscan Colleges and Universities(AFCU) Symposium.
This year’s gathering, “The Franciscan Courage to Venture: A Symposium on Preparing Outstanding Leaders for the Modern World,” was kicked off with a liturgy from Indianapolis Archbishop Joseph W. Tobin, C.Ss.R. Keynote speakers included John C. Lechleiter, chairman, president, and chief executive officer of Eli Lilly and Company; Father David Couturier, OFM Cap, dean of St. Bonaventure University; and Reverend Thomas Nairn, OFM, senior director of the Catholic Health Association of the United States.
The symposium offered participants the chance to network and collaborate in general large sessions as well as in small interest groups. The chief academic officers group discussed study abroad, undergraduate research, online course delivery, and the medical school admission track. The recruitment and communications group examined ways to promote Franciscan schools.
Since the original meeting to determine the symposium’s theme in the late spring of 2013, faculty and staff have devoted countless hours to planning and preparation for the event. “To make our guests feel welcome on campus, we knew we would need all hands on deck. Faculty, staff, and students from all departments volunteered to do everything from introducing keynote speakers to driving golf carts to morning Mass,” said Maggie Kucik, manager of event marketing and sponsorships. “It was an exciting time to be able to see the entire campus community come together to host our peers from other AFCU institutions.” From the beauty of the grounds to the cheerful smiles, Marian University established a reputation of being a very hospitable place and received many heartfelt thanks.