BRIDGEWATER — Bridgewater College inaugurated its ninth president this morning during a ceremony on campus.
David Bushman, 50, officially became president of the college on June 1.
In his inaugural address this morning, Bushman promised “to lead with integrity and care, to serve with humility and respect, and to earn anew every day the trust that true leadership and true service demand.”
Bushman also noted the challenges facing higher education, particularly given heightened scrutiny for financial value. “These are trying times for higher education,” he said. “Issues of cost and access and completion and quality are the stuff of mainstream media with an almost metronomic regularity. There exists a growing wariness or skepticism about the value of higher education in general, and of the liberal arts in particular, and that skepticism to me seems different in kind, and not just in degree, from times past.”
Bushman said the college is poised for the next level of excellence in providing a sound liberal arts education. “The opportunity clearly exists for Bridgewater to achieve a very public and very prominent level of excellence,” he said, “and for our graduates to have a profound impact on the world – all by remaining true to those core principles that have guided us and sustained us on the journey we now share.”
Bushman replaced former president George Cornelius, who announced in March 2012 that he planned to let his contract expire at the end of the school year, after less than two years with the college.
Bushman earned an undergraduate degree in biology from Loyola College in Maryland in 1985, and then went on to earn his master’s and Ph.D. in entomology from the University of Maryland, College Park.
The presidency is the Baltimore native’s second. He previously served in that role at Lees-McRae College in Banner Elk, N.C.
— Staff Report