New initiatives explored during Adrian College’s State of the College address

Posted Wednesday, April 05, 2023
Author: Mickey Alvarado

Adrian College President Jeffrey Docking discussed several new initiatives and highlighted many others that were completed last year, during his 2023 State of the College address on Friday, March 31, in the Adrian Tobias Center.

“The title of this year’s State of the College address is, ‘The Back of the Arch,’” Docking told those in attendance. “It’s funny, because although everyone has noticed the front of the arch, facing 223 and the world, I still have people come up to me and say, ‘I didn’t even notice there is something on the back of the arch.’”

He explained to the audience that an inscription noting, Palma Non Sine Labore, had been added to the back of the arch, meaning, No Victory Without Work.

“Out of all the titles we’ve had, I think I love this title more than any other,” Docking said. “Because I think that No Victory Without Work describes, perhaps, better than any other title, what I believe to be true about our community, our students, our faculty, and staff. We work hard… We believe in hard work. We believe that achievement should be earned. That there is dignity in hard work and there is honor in merited accomplishment… So, today, we are going to hear from many hardworking achievers who have really built this institution and enhanced it over the past year.”

A highlight video followed Docking’s introduction featuring many of the College’s accomplishments and initiatives, including a 223 Boulevard ribbon cutting ceremony, the Hickman Art Gallery and Mahan Hall renovations, several new majors now being offered at the College including computer science, web design, supply chain management, cybersecurity, and sales, Adrian College being featured in the New York Times, new U.S. News and World Report rankings, a new interactive website, Nicolay Field’s Turf Replacement Project, a Rugby Facility Announcement, and several other projects.

The first presentation of the afternoon, given by Erik Skampo, the owner of Adrian Coating, was titled, “Brick by Brick,” featuring the completion of Mahan Hall and its new art gallery.

Skampo said his company had the privilege of painting the interior of Mahan Hall and the art gallery, and noted that it was completed ahead of time, despite his teams running into supply chain issues.

“This is a testament to Krieghoff and the hard work of all the trades on site,” Skampo said. “A building renovation/addition of this magnitude required new windows, flooring, electrical work, plumbing, drywall and masonry work, just to name a few.”

He noted that more than 50,000 bricks were added to the building. To commemorate the accomplishment, he gave out miniature souvenir bricks, made in the Adrian College art department.

“One team rode the back of ‘hard work’ last year to achieve our first team national championship in the history of the College,” Docking said when introducing the next presenter, Adam Krug, the head coach of the NCAA DIII men’s hockey team.

Krug’s speech was titled, “A Culture of Hard Work and Dedication.” He talked about how he was a student athlete on the NCAA men’s hockey team and explained how he eventually became the head coach years later.

“We had a good start to my regime, yet no NCAA championship, which became the benchmark for success,” Krug said. “After a turbulent and disappointing 2018-2019 season, some things needed to change. We needed a culture shift, a new way of doing things. We needed to change the perception of our program. We worked at it. We grinded. We lost sleep over it.”

He said they “worked” to earn that championship.

“We trusted our process, our consistency, accountability, relentlessness, and discipline helped us persevere and ultimately surge forward to Adrian College’s first-ever NCAA championship… This victory wasn’t one season’s worth of work or luck. It was 16 years in the making. I can assure you, there is no victory without work,” Krug said.

Circle K student volunteers were also recognized as a newly reinstated campus chapter, as well as the College’s new Brother-to-Brother SAAB chapter that was recently formed.

During the event, Adrian College Bulldog caps were distributed to those in attendance, so everyone was able to tip their cap to the cornhole team. The team’s head coach, Max Benedict, and two of his athletes spoke about how they quickly rose to the national stage and were featured on ESPN-2 during their inaugural season.

Every year, Adrian College presents a Creativity Award to a student, faculty or staff member for submitting the most creative idea to enhance the campus community. Up to $10,000 goes towards implementing the winning idea, while the person suggesting the idea receives a check for $1,000.

Junior graphic design major Cheyenne Muse was this year’s winner with her idea of having the College make major and minor specific T-shirts available to all students. As part of the initiative, the names of each and every academic major and minor would be screen printed on Adrian College T-shirts so students can represent their programs with pride, both on and off campus, raising awareness to all of the academic areas of study that Adrian College offers.

To watch the entire Adrian College State of the College address and see all of the featured presenters, visit

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