As the semester draws to a close at VCSU, faculty are posting grades, students are headed home for the holidays, and I am once again packing up a few items to move down the hall to the President’s Office. As many of you remember, I served as interim president back in 2014, after Dr. Shirley resigned for the presidency at Minot. I am honored to serve in that same capacity this coming year while we pursue another search for a new president.Valley City and VCSU have an important place in my heart: I was born here in Mercy Hospital, I attended the model school at VCSTC for a couple of years, and, more recently, my husband and I have raised our children here for the past 20 years. At this point, I have lived longer in Valley City than any other place!While we are very sorry to see Dr. Mason move to Kansas, we recognize the important career move this opportunity offers her. Meanwhile, we have a number of initiatives and program needs to continue working on this year, from facility upgrades to several potential new programs to ongoing efforts to revise curriculum with new technology tools that make education both more affordable and more engaging for our students. Valley City State University has a wonderful faculty and staff who regularly go the extra mile to help students succeed. It is their effort to recruit and retain students that has generated the Fall 2017 semester’s enrollment increase of about 6 percent, to 1,522, our highest headcount enrollment headcount ever reported at VCSU. We are also fortunate to have strong support from the Valley City community, and I thank you for your efforts to make our students feel welcome. As the year progresses, I’ll try to keep you up-to-date in this bi-weekly column. Meanwhile, I wish you a joyful holiday season.