Editorial: An Open Letter to President Tetlow


Sidney Ovrom

President Tetlow addressing the Loyola faculty at the presidential convocation. She looks forward to leading the Loyola community. Photo credit: Sidney Ovrom

As Loyola’s first female, non-Jesuit president, you compared accepting your position as Loyola’s president as “coming home.” We, at the Loyola Maroon, are happy to say welcome home, President Tetlow.

We were honored that you took the time out of your, surely busy, schedule to meet with us on your second day in office to answer our questions about the future of Loyola. That sort of willingness to directly engage with the student body is one of the qualities that we’re most excited about for your career at Loyola. You’re bringing a “presentness” to the position that previous presidents may have lacked. Your activity on Twitter, Instagram, etc. indicates a willingness to speak our language and engage the student body in a way that is more personable, relatable and active. To be perfectly honest, some of us at The Maroon weren’t even sure what Father Wildes looked like. But, by your second day on the job, you made sure we knew exactly who was steering our ship.

You’ve made it clear that getting to know us is your priority. You told us that, though you have lots of ideas, you don’t want to try to implement them until you know what we need, until you know us. That willingness to listen and learn from the student body is empowering, especially to a student body that was told we were on a “sinking ship.” It’s nice to know we’re being listened to during a period of instability for the institution.

And since you’re listening, President Tetlow, we feel obliged to tell you about the some of the issues still on our minds. For better or worse, this is a time of change for the school. Administration and faculty changes have been making students anxious and concerned about their futures. Before the school year even started, some of our staff’s classes have been cancelled without warning, and with Naomi Yavneh’s resignation, the future of the honors program seems unclear. We get it; it’s the first week on the job, and we’re not expecting every question about the future to be answered right off the bat. And although we’re confident you won’t let this ship sink, there are still some holes that need to be plugged. But from what we’ve seen of you so far, we’re glad to have you at the helm.