Last updated on February 1, 2021
W. Robert Jenkins, dean of Livingston College, wrote the following letter to the Class of 1978, included in the college yearbook, The Rock, Volume III. (Jenkins was named permanent dean on March 6, 1978. Most likely, the letter below listing Jenkins as acting dean was written before that date.)
I am addressing this letter to you since it is upon you that the reputation and future of Livingston College will lie. In your stay at Livingston you have had the opportunity to study under a truly outstanding faculty, one second to none in Rutgers University and one which includes many persons of international reputation. I hope that you have availed yourself fully of this opportunity and will always reflect upon and profit from the ideas passed on to you by these people. After all, ideas and the ability to deal with them will be the greatest single return on your four-year investment in higher education.
Another and very significant part of anyone’s education involves his or her peer relationships which have been developed. At Livingston College you have been a part of an unusually diverse student body, one which represents all facets of our general population. All racial and ethnic groups are present in significant numbers, older students returning to or just entering college after a number of years outside of the educational stream constitute a visible segment of our student body, and varied political and religious beliefs are well represented. To this group you owe acknowledgement of the broadening of your horizons, and they owe to you acknowledgement of your own specific contribution to the College.
Now that you are leaving us to take your place in the job market, to assume positions in all aspects of the employment scheme, and to go on to graduate and professional schools, you can best evaluate how good an education you received. Did your studies and your associations at Livingston College prepare you adequately? Do you have the knowledge and skills of your peers? Let us know. Your responses will help us to evaluate and improve our curriculum.
Finally, it has been a pleasure having you at Livingston College. I have enjoyed our personal contacts and wish that it had been possible to know each of you. Don’t forget your College; keep in touch. You are the reward for our efforts and our investment in the future.
W. Robert Jenkins
Revised December 1, 2015