The April 25 dedication of the George W. Bush Presidential Center marked a historic day in the life of the University.

The event was attended by all five living U.S. presidents, thousands of supporters and community members, and more than 600 media from around the world. Seen by literally millions worldwide, the dedication has taken our University to new levels of international visibility.

The many activities related to the dedication were launched by SMU’s own Founders’ Day festivities, including a Bush Presidential Center Welcome Ceremony on April 19.

All of these historic events are occurring during our Second Century Celebration, which runs concurrently with The Second Century Campaign, culminating in 2015. During each year of the celebration we commemorate the centennial of a key moment in SMU’s history; 2013 is the Year of the Library, marking the 100th anniversary of the founding of SMU’s first library in 1913.

Recently the campaign leadership met to review the outstanding progress of The Second Century Campaign and to chart our course for the final months of the campaign, leading to its conclusion in December 2015.

The campaign’s leadership plans a volunteer conclave on October 25, 2013 (the Friday of Homecoming weekend), at which time all campaign volunteers will gather to launch the crucial final phase of the campaign. Over the summer we will be working with our key leaders and donors to identify the most important remaining priorities for funding and to facilitate ways that all SMU alumni and friends can participate.

Thank you again for all you have done to enable SMU to achieve such remarkable progress. I look forward to seeing our campaign volunteers in October as we look to The Second Century Campaign’s exciting final phase and ensure that the University continues on its successful path for years to come.


R. Gerald Turner