THE INAUGURATION OF
KATHLEEN A. GETZ, PH.D.

13TH PRESIDENT OF 
MERCYHURST UNIVERSITY

Enriching the Circle of Mercy: Good Today, Better Tomorrow

Following the theme “Enriching the Circle of Mercy: Good Today, Better Tomorrow,” the inauguration of Kathleen A. Getz, Ph.D., as the 13th president of Mercyhurst University will be celebrated on Saturday, Oct. 2, 2021.

President Getz joins the Mercyhurst community at a time of great anticipation and optimism, with the university’s centennial approaching in 2026. In naming “Enriching the Circle of Mercy: Good Today, Better Tomorrow” as her inaugural theme, she gestures toward both the historic nature of her presidency and the hope and determination at the heart of her leadership style.

President Getz’s tenure marks the first time a woman has led Mercyhurst in nearly 50 years — since the 1963-1972 tenure of Sister Carolyn Herrmann, RSM, Ph.D., who was preceded in that role by six Sisters of Mercy. In her writings and actions, Sister Carolyn conveyed her bold vision, civic engagement, and extraordinary compassion for the Mercyhurst community, shepherding Mercyhurst through an era of social unrest and paradigmatic change. 

As we emerge from the global pandemic, President Getz brings the pioneering vision of the Sisters of Mercy full circle, solidifying Mercyhurst’s claim to leadership in service and purpose to provide transformative, 21st century education rooted in Mercy.

During her first days in office, President Getz declared her tenure will be marked by a climate of hope. For nearly 100 years, the Sisters, servant-leaders, faculty, and employees of Mercyhurst have exemplified diligence, resolve, and clear-eyed optimism for our future — a philosophy to which President Getz proudly recommits the university in a direct echo of Catherine McAuley, founder of the Sisters of Mercy, who wrote in an 1841 letter “The simplest and most practical lesson I know … is to resolve to be good today, but better tomorrow.”

The inauguration ceremony is set for Saturday, Oct. 2, at 1:30 p.m. in the Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center. In anticipation of the investiture, the university plans numerous events beginning Thursday, Sept. 30, and continuing through the evening of Oct. 2. Per President Getz’s request, the entire three-day observance will showcase the many talents of Mercyhurst students, faculty, and staff.

Please continue to monitor this webpage; a complete schedule of events and all relevant details will be announced here as they are finalized in the coming weeks.

Inauguration Schedule

Time Event Location Cost Attire
Thursday, September 30
7 p.m. Community Movie Night: That Thing You Do! Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center Free with registration Casual attire
Friday, October 1
4 p.m. Inaugural Mass Christ the King Chapel Free with registration Business attire
Saturday, October 2
1:30 p.m. Inauguration Ceremony Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center Free with registration Business attire
Regalia (delegates)
7 p.m. Campus Celebration Experience Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center $50 per person/$75 per couple Cocktail attire

The President’s Initiative Fund at Mercyhurst University

New leadership means bold, new ideas all designed to move the institution forward and remain competitive in a challenging and constantly evolving marketplace of higher education.

The President’s Initiative Fund provides a pool of immediately accessible resources to support critical priorities and seize emerging opportunities that celebrate the mission and values of Mercyhurst University.

The goal of the President’s Initiative Fund is to become fully endowed, providing resources for future Mercyhurst leaders each dedicated to moving the university towards leadership on a national and global level.

To learn more about the fund, or contribute, visit the President's Initiative Fund webpage.

DISCLAIMER: Mercyhurst University follows COVID-19 guidance from state and local health departments, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The university’s COVID-19 policies frequently change to reflect the most current public health guidance available. Please consult our COVID-19 website or call 814-824-3600 to stay informed of the latest safety and mitigation policies before visiting campus or attending any university events. Protocols that are currently in place are subject to change in compliance with revisions to national and local guidelines regarding COVID-19; Presidential Inauguration guests will be notified in advance of any policy changes or updates.

Mask Policy for Inauguration

We would love to see your smiling face on campus for the Inauguration festivities. To ensure your safety and the safety of our community, you will have to cover that smile. Masks will be required for all indoor events. Naturally, you can remove your mask while enjoying food and drink.