For more than a hundred years, The University of Alabama has been known as the “Capstone” of higher education, a designation coined by President G.H. Denny, for whom Denny Chimes and Bryant-Denny Stadium are named. Capstone means high point or peak, and Dr. Denny saw the University — the state’s largest —as the crowning achievement of Alabama, providing opportunity for economic development and cultural transformation.
How do we, the College of Human Environmental Sciences, measure up to such a high calling? Not only are we the fastest-growing division on our campus, but we are also one of the largest HES schools in the nation. Our graduates are leaders in their fields wherever they go. Our groundbreaking research leads to practical application that changes the lives of thousands of individuals and families and fosters more effective public policy. Our students, faculty and alumni are known for their generous spirit of service throughout their communities.
These contributions are exemplified in this issue of Reunion magazine — from our alliance with the National Institutes of Health to establish an addictions minor, to research that advances our knowledge of the role of sleep in our lives, to our teaching of cutting-edge solutions for cyber security. Also featured are the contributions of world-renowned artist Frank Fleming at our child development center and those of our own artist-in-residence Beverly Kissinger in her long career at CHES. And the campus visit of Robert Craft, mayor of Gulf Shores, Alabama, offered the kind of real-world exposure we frequently provide for our students.
Finally, I want to add that throughout its history, CHES has never had a more ardent and articulate champion than Dr. Mary Crenshaw, who served as our dean for 15 years. Dean Crenshaw passed away last October, but her legacy will live long here.
She inspired thousands of our faculty and students to reach for that crowning achievement, and, wherever they went, to remain exemplary representatives of the Capstone — a noble aspiration for all of us.