Four ‘generations’ of presidents connect

Aug 11, 2020
NU Presidents

Above photo (left to right): Sister Tarcisia Roths, ASC, Noreen M. Carrocci, Ph.D., Kathleen S. Jagger, Ph.D. and Teresa Hall Bartels.

Newman University recently named its 12th president, Kathleen S. Jagger, Ph.D., who officially began her role July 1, 2020.

Jagger has been spending many hours meeting with individual departments and teams throughout Newman in an effort to connect with the staff and faculty she will be working with.

She said one of her top priorities is meeting the Newman community in preparation for a smooth transition into her new role and becoming more familiar and in tune with its environment.

“With enthusiasm and vision, I am ready to work with students, faculty, staff and community stakeholders to continue laying the foundation for a bright future at Newman,” said jagger.

These connections included a very special interaction with two past presidents and a former interim president of Newman — Sister Tarcisia Roths, ASC, Noreen M. Carrocci, Ph.D. and Teresa Hall Bartels — during a late July luncheon.

The meeting helped Jagger connect with some of the university’s past leaders and helped her gain new knowledge regarding some historical and operational factors.

Sister Tarcisia Roths, ASC

Roths served as president from 1991-2000. During her time at Newman, she focused on improving the core curriculum, growing the fine arts and increasing enrollment.

Her initiatives led to the creation of the Newman University Troubadours — a select, small ensemble of singers separate from the Newman University Chorale — and more theatrical productions.

Roths oversaw the Renaissance 2000 campaign, raising millions of dollars, funding the construction of Eck Hall and renovations to Sacred Heart Hall.

Roths continues to stay active in the Newman community in various ways. Besides serving as president, Roths is a 1948 and 1954 Newman graduate and professor emerita of history.

Noreen M. Carrocci, Ph.D.

Carrocci served as president from 2007-2019. During her tenure, she saw the completion of Fugate Hall, Carrocci Hall and Dugan Library.

She was the fourth female and first laywoman to hold the presidency. Her presidency saw a first-time student population growth of 67%. The four-year graduation rate improved by 30%, and student retention rates were at an all-time high.

She oversaw the Facing Forward campaign, which resulted in the new Bishop Gerber Science Center and renovations to Eck Hall with new facilities and equipment for nursing and allied health.

Carrocci is also known for her work and partnership within the Wichita community. Carrocci retired at the end of 2019 after 12 1/2 years of service.

Teresa Hall Bartels

Bartels served as interim president for the first six months of 2020. Her service at Newman began as a Board of Trustees member in 2011.

Since then, she has served as chair of the Advancement Committee, a member of the Enrollment Management Committee, Board of Trustees vice-chair, Board of Trustees chair and finally, interim university president.

Bartels said her time as interim president allowed her to establish relationships with community members and gave her opportunities and memories that she will carry with her for many years to come.

Kathleen S. Jagger, Ph.D.

Jagger is the university’s second laywoman to serve as president in its 86-year history.

With extensive higher education and leadership experience, Jagger is uniquely qualified to lead Wichita’s Catholic university. She recently served as acting president at Thomas More University in Crestview Hills, Kentucky, where she also held vice president and dean positions and led the school’s transition from a college to a university.

She looks forward to continuing her efforts and getting to know everyone as the new academic year progresses.

“The innovative spirit of the faculty and staff is an obvious advantage for Newman University.”