On Retirement from Academia

Today’s Commencement exercise for the brave, graceful, gifted, and committed class of ’21 who have completed their studies at Westminster Choir College, was for me the end of a chapter. Although my retirement is formally effective on June 30, I consider May 14, 2021, to be retirement day, happily so. 

Clearly, a new version of Westminster is shaping up, primarily due to the dedication, abilities, and intense work of my beloved faculty colleagues. I sincerely wish a meaningful and productive future for this new entity.

For thirty-four years, I was honored to be part of a great tradition that so enriched my life and that of my family, in deep and vital ways – an institution that made the world a somewhat better place. In my view, the recent existential battle that we fought for nearly five years is over, and we did not prevail. I’m honored to have been in league with courageous faculty, alumni, students, and the prized Rider University colleagues who stood with us.

With deep gratitude for what has been, and in hopes for a bright, new future for Westminster, I’m moving on.

Elem Eley, 5-14-21

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