Dr. F. Dennis Riegelnegg has announced his resignation as Saint Joseph’s College president, effective June 6, 2014.
Riegelnegg’s term, which began July 2009, was highlighted by the 7,634 acres of farm real estate valued at more than $40 million gifted to the College through the Juanita Waugh Revocable Living Trust. Riegelnegg’s term also saw the College reach its highest enrollment since 1971 in the 2013-14 academic year, the inception of the Master of Business Administration and Forensic Science graduate programs, and the refinancing of the College’s long-term debt. The College also froze its 2013-14 tuition and offered a guaranteed tuition rate plan under Riegelnegg’s leadership. With the help of the Fellows, phase one of the restoration of the Saint Joseph’s Chapel began in August 2013; reconstruction of the twin towers is underway.
Riegelnegg has been instrumental in building a collaborative relationship between SJC and Ivy Tech Community College-Lafayette. The institutions have entered into a partnership that will provide a convenient pathway for Ivy Tech students to earn a bachelor’s degree in business or accounting from SJC. In April 2011, Ivy Tech and SJC established transfer opportunities for graduates with associate of science degrees in accounting, business administration, criminal justice, education, and liberal arts. Under that agreement, Ivy Tech graduates can complete a bachelor’s degree on the SJC campus.
Under Riegelnegg, SJC received several grant awards, including $75,000 in the last three years from the Helen Brach Foundation to develop a co-teaching model, improve campus sustainability, and improve the retention rate of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) students. In early 2014, SJC received a $1 million grant from Lilly Endowment to enhance and expand opportunities for the College’s graduates to find meaningful employment in Indiana.
“SJC is losing a president who has been totally dedicated to its students, faculty, staff, alumni, parents, and friends,” said Ben Sponseller ’74, Chairman of the SJC Board of Trustees.
Riegelnegg and his wife, Patti, look forward to spending more time with their family as they await the birth of their first grandchild.
An interim president will be named shortly as the search for a replacement is conducted.
Named a "character-building college" by the Templeton Foundation, a "Best Midwestern College" by the Princeton Review, and “Best Value” and "Best Midwestern College" by US News & World Report, Saint Joseph's College is a four-year, Catholic college offering 27 majors, 4 group majors, 35 minors, and 9 pre-professional programs, complemented by the nationally acclaimed Core Program. Founded and sponsored by the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, SJC is located in Rensselaer, Indiana, approximately 90 minutes from both Chicago and Indianapolis, on a park-like campus of 180 acres and has an enrollment of nearly 1,200 students.
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