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Margaret Freije Remarks: Fauci Dedication Ceremony

June 11th, 2022 by 

Margaret Freije, provost and dean of the College of the Holy Cross, speaks at the Integrated Science Complex during a ceremony dedicated to Dr. Anthony S. Fauci '62 Hon '87 on June 11, 2022 in Worcester, Massachusetts. (Photo by Michael Ivins/Holy Cross)

Margaret Freije, provost and dean of the College:

Good morning, my name is Margaret Freije. I am the Provost and Dean of the College, and I am delighted to welcome you to the dedication of the Anthony S. Fauci Integrated Science Complex.

I particularly want to welcome and thank the members of the Holy Cross COVID-19 team. These colleagues have worked tirelessly over the past 2.5 years to monitor the progress of the pandemic, to keep us informed about current medical understandings of COVID-19 and to implement policies to protect our community and allow us to continue to teach and learn together. We owe them all a debt of thanks.

We are gathered here in the atrium of the College’s integrated science complex, a complex that was expanded, renovated and dedicated in Spring 2010 with a keynote address from Dr. Anthony Fauci. It is a complex designed to ensure that our students would have access to state-of-the-art equipment and to support the research efforts of our faculty. But it is also designed to facilitate interactions between student and faculty researchers across the disciplines, to be a welcoming space for those within and outside the sciences and to make the work and the joy of science visible on our campus and in our world.

This is particularly important because our commitment is to offer an education in the sciences and mathematics as part of a Jesuit liberal arts education. We offer an education that certainly challenges our students to achieve at the highest levels of scientific excellence — classes and laboratories that offer students the opportunities to use powerful scientific instrumentation and to participate in cutting edge research.

But we want much more than that; we want our students who are majoring in the arts and humanities to also be scientifically literate, to understand the types of questions science asks and the process scientists use to begin to answer those questions. We want our students pursuing science also to be well trained in the arts and the humanities and the social sciences; to be able to write well and speak compellingly; to be able to see the world and see science through the lens of philosophy or literature or history or sociology.

We want that because we believe it makes our science students better scientists … scientists who will ask questions others might not ask and will open new lines of research that others might not think to pursue. But we want that also because we believe it makes all of our students better citizens, better members of the communities they will participate in, and better leaders.

We want that because our commitment is not only to the what our students will do, but also to the who our students will become and the with whom our students will stand.

We are unapologetic — our commitment is to both education and formation. We want our students to be intellectually curious and highly trained and we want our students to be leaders who uphold the highest ethical standards. We want our students to be leaders who will serve, to be people for and with others. We want our students to be those who will cross borders and transcend boundaries — students who will continue in the tradition of Ignatius — to leaven the common good.

For me, this is what this day represents. This is what we celebrate as we celebrate all of our returning alumni and as we particularly recognize the ways in which one alumnus, Dr. Anthony Fauci, has lived out our Holy Cross commitment — as a skilled scientist and an ethical leader dedicated to service and to the common good. It is a pleasure to have all of you, students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends, with us for this celebration.

And now it’s my pleasure to introduce Dr. Helen Boucher, Holy Cross Class of 1986, a nationally respected infectious diseases physician and healthcare administrator. Dr. Boucher currently serves as dean ad interim for Tufts University School of Medicine and chief academic officer for Tufts Medicine, a role that was created for her in July of 2021.

She was instrumental in leading Tufts Medicine’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and is the first woman to lead the Tufts University School of Medicine in its 128-year history. Helen will soon begin her term as Chair of the Holy Cross Board of Trustees on July 1, becoming the first woman to lead the Board. Her selection fortuitously coincides with the College’s 50th anniversary of the first women students being admitted to Holy Cross, to be celebrated during the 2022-23 academic year.

A resident of Wellesley, Massachusetts, Dr. Boucher is married to fellow Crusader Norm Boucher, Class of 1985.

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