A look back at 2017–18, including faculty, student, and staff highlights; the adoption of Summit, Trinity’s new strategic plan; and so much more.

See some of the work of our students, staff, and faculty that make us proud!

Summer/Fall 2017 Highlights

10,000+ comic books

The Watkinson Library received a donated collection of comic books and graphic novels.

The creativity and intellectual capital are here; now we’re galvanizing the collaborative leadership to write an exciting new story for Hartford.

Trinity College President Joanne Berger-Sweeney Writing in The New York Times about Hartford (June 22, 2017)

Welcoming the Class of 2022


Six New Tenure-Track Faculty Members Join Trinity

In 2017 we welcomed Susan M. Bush, assistant professor of biology; Lindsey A. Hanson, assistant professor of chemistry; Kevin Huang ’12, assistant professor of engineering; David Souto Alcalde, assistant professor of language and culture studies; Alyson K. Spurgas, assistant professor of sociology; and Hilary E. Wyss, Allan K. Smith and Gwendolyn Miles Smith Professor of English.


New Trustees

Four dedicated alumni joined the Board of Trustees in 2017, including ex-officio member Justin S. Maccarone Jr. ’81, P’19.


Bantams in Balance

Trinity launched a new student wellness program focused on five main areas: substance use; self-care; relationships and sexual health; leadership; and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Summit: A Strategic Plan for the Future of Trinity College

After 18 months and with the help of the entire community (including 80 who served on various committees), Trinity College adopted a new strategic plan, Summit, setting us on a bold path toward our bicentennial and beyond.

More about Summit:

The first-year seminar I have been teaching this fall is probably the most impressive, student for student, that I have taught in 15 years at Trinity. And when I talk with colleagues around campus, I hear the same story over and over—that their first-years and sophomores are intellectually engaged, creative, open-minded, motivated, and respectful of their peers in numbers that those colleagues haven’t seen in years, if ever. Trinity feels like a place where the campus culture is transforming itself quickly, and in exciting ways... .

English Professor David Rosen in The Washington Post’s Grade Point blog (October 23, 2017)
Final Score: 28–3

The Bantams’ win over Wesleyan capped the football team's season at 8–1 and clinched a second consecutive NESCAC title.

At a recent forum on "Bridging Divides," the two of us participated in a campus conversation about the essential value of unfettered inquiry and debate as the heart of a liberal arts education... . It exemplified the kind of open and free-flowing community discussion that can enable colleges and universities to find ways to come together to develop core principles governing free expression before a crisis ever envelops a campus.

Former Philadelphia Inquirer editor Bill Marimow ’69 H’16 and Phi Beta Kappa President Fred Lawrence, From a co-authored op-ed in The Inquirer (October 9, 2017)

Winter/Spring 2018 Highlights

$800,000 from the Mellon Foundation

The Mellon Foundation awards Trinity a three-year grant for arts and humanities, digital scholarship, and inclusive pedagogy.

Jump-Starting J-Start

Trinity welcomed its first cohort of students in the new “January Start” program, beginning with an intensive two-week personalized orientation to the college and to Hartford.

More about J-Start:


‘INK: Recent Paintings by Deborah Buck’ at the Widener

Deborah Buck ’78 brought to the Widener Gallery an exhibition of works on paper that combine Japanese sumi ink with densely layered compositions of acrylic, pastel, and chalk—work described by art critic Gregory Volk as “protean paintings that seem like eccentric, ever-metamorphosing mini-worlds or vibrant environments.”


A comprehensive evaluation that began with a campus visit in March 2017 culminated in a decision by the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education that Trinity be continued in acceditation.

In preparation for the visit of the Evaluation Team, members of the Trinity community conducted a two-year process of self-study that culminated in a final report​. You may view the Evaluation Team’s report and Trinity’s response​.

Trinity’s next comprehensive evaluation is scheduled for the spring of 2027.

I think that the current leadership at Trinity seems very committed to building a stronger partnership between the college and the city, and we look forward to continuing to work with President Berger-Sweeney to accomplish that.

Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin in Hartford Magazine’s “Strengthening Ties: Trinity College And The City: New Action Lab Downtown” (March 2018)

Fulbright for Bauer

Associate Professor of International Studies Janet L. Bauer received a Fulbright Global Scholar grant for her research project on The Social Geographies of Islam in Diaspora: Race, Gender, Generation, and Place.


More Faculty Fulbrights

Biology’s Kent Dunlap, computer science’s Peter Yoon, and religious studies’ Justin Fifield were among this year’s recipients of U.S. scholar grants from the Fulbright Program.


NIH Grant for Virus Research

Anthropology Professor James A. Trostle is a co-principal investigator on a research study that recently received a four-year grant award of $2,666,768 from the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The grant supports research examining the development and spread of two infectious diseases—Zika and dengue, both transmitted by the same mosquito species.

17 National Championships

Men's squash beat Harvard 6–3 to capture the Potter Cup and claim the team's 17th national championship.

Make your shoulders strong—I guarantee you’re going to pave the way for somebody else to stand on them.

Jemele Hill, sports journalist, from remarks delivered at Trinity kicking off Women’s History Month

Robot Competition

The 25th annual International Fire Fighting Home Robot Competition brought to Trinity 70 teams from seven countries, all in the name of advancing robotics as an educational tool.


Hip-Hop Festival

Trinity's 13th International Hip-Hop Festival was a three-day celebration of the power of hip-hop as an educational tool and source of cultural identity for artists, educators, scholars, and organizers from around the world.


Samba Fest

Samba Fest, in its 12th year, was a three-day event in April that welcomed people from near and far to enjoy Brazilian music, food, culture, and activities.


Trinity Film Festival

Celebrating undergraduate filmmakers, the seventh annual Trinity Film Festival, held at Cinestudio, included screenings of 22 entries from the United States, Canada, Mexico, and France.

Giving Day

In 2018, Trinity had one of its most successful Giving Days ever, raising more than $2.3 million from 2,290 donors and unlocking the Chair’s Circle Challenge that contributed an additional $500,000 to the college.

More from Giving Day

In conjunction with Giving Day, the Board of  Trustees, including Shake Shack founder Danny Meyer ’80, P’20, hosted a senior send-off party at the Koeppel Community Sports Center, complete with Shack fare, ice skating, music, and games.


Commencement 2018

Remember that wherever you go from here, Trinity will always be here for you; it will be your home.

Trinity President Joanne Berger-Sweeney to the 580 graduating students at Trinity’s 192nd Commencement.

women's lacrosse graduation ceremony

A special ceremony was held on May 21 for the nine graduating members of the Trinity women’s lacrosse team who missed Commencement while playing in the NCAA Division III tournament. The team made it as far as the national quarterfinals before falling to Salisbury University. It was the seventh consecutive year the team had made it to the Elite Eight.


Reunion 2018

More than 1,000 alumni and family members returned to campus to celebrate Reunion in June.

During Reunion Weekend, alumni enjoyed more than 80 events and activities, including Friday night’s traditional New England-style clambake, campus tours, story time with the Bantam, tours of the Trinity Chapel and carillon, and an alumni football challenge on the newly renovated Jessee/Miller Field, and more.

More than 300 alumni and friends gathered on the Main Quad for the Parade of Classes that led into Convocation, where several alumni were honored with prizes and where former University of Hartford president Walter Harrison ’68 received an honorary doctor of humane letters degree.

See a collection of Reunion photos.