May 01, 2014
Fr. Kevin E. Mackin, OFM, Mount Saint Mary College president,
embraced Mary Bocskocsky, student body president, after her speech.
Photo by Lee Ferris.
An enthusiastic crowd of hundreds gathered to show their
appreciation for Fr. Kevin E. Mackin, OFM, president of Mount Saint
Mary College, who will be stepping down after the conclusion of the
2013-14 academic year.
College trustees, campus personnel, student leaders, and
regional leaders/partners such as Sen. William J. Larkin Jr. and
businessman and philanthropist William Kaplan were present in
recognition of Fr. Mackin’s service to the college and
Fr. Mackin, the fifth president of Mount Saint Mary College, was
ordained a priest five decades ago. He has served as president of
the college for nearly six years, and as a Franciscan friar,
professor, and executive for more than 50 years, including 11 years
as president of Siena College where he holds the title of president
Among those who praised Fr. Mackin during the program were
Joseph Valenti, vice president for college advancement; college
chaplain Fr. Francis Amodio, O.Carm.; Louis Fortunato, professor of
accounting, speaking as chair of the Faculty Senate and observing
the president’s responsibility on campus “24/7 and 365”; and Sr.
Ann Sakac, OP, president emerita, who spoke for the Dominican
Sisters of Hope and gave a benediction for the special
“Fr. Kevin has served a truly diverse college community,” said
Valenti, “but he’s never forgotten that at the heart of this
community is our students.”
Student body president Mary Bocskocsky of Mohegan Lake, NY
thanked the esteemed educator for his commitment to strengthening
the Mount community.
Fr. Mackin “is a passionate, innovative, and dynamic leader,”
she said. “On behalf of the student body, we thank you… your
dedication to your students will forever be remembered and
cherished. You will truly be missed at Mount Saint Mary College,
but your legacy will live on through the loving community.”
Dr. Albert J. Gruner, chairman of the college’s Board
of Trustees, said that Fr. Mackin’s excellent leadership is
evidenced in accomplishments such as the college’s recently
launched physician assistant program, the accreditation of the
business school, and an atmosphere that consistently fosters true
academic growth. “I have personally witnessed opportunities for
students being created on this campus that are difficult to find
elsewhere,” he revealed.
Gruner presented to Fr. Mackin a Papal Blessing from Pope
Francis and other farewell gifts from the Mount community.
Right: William Kaplan, Newburgh businessman and philanthropist
(left) greeted Fr. Mackin at the recent farewell reception. Photo
by Lee Ferris.
Under Fr. Mackin’s direction, the Mount purchased the Dominican
Center, and launched “A Call to Excellence: The Campaign for the
Dominican Center” in 2012, to raise $10 million for the
transformation to a new, truly state-of-the-art library and
Since 2008, the college achieved a fully online RN to BS degree
program, an interdisciplinary major in technology and digital
media, and a new sports management concentration.
The college is currently taking applications for its new
physician assistant program (pending accreditation – provisional).
Students will be immersed in the Mount’s rigorous natural sciences
undergraduate curriculum for three years. Following completion of
the undergraduate requirements, successful applicants will complete
their studies in two years, graduating from the Mount with a
bachelor’s degree in biology and a master’s in physician assistant
“I truly believe that when one door closes in life, another door
opens,” said Fr. Mackin. “Yes, this door at the Mount is closing
for me, but another is slowly opening: a door to new forms of
pastoral ministry.” He added, “The Lord be with you. Thank you all
from the bottom of my heart.”
In addition to several other events, Fr. Mackin will speak at
the college’s invitational commencement on May 17.
More key accomplishments during the presidency of Fr. Kevin E.
- Established the Catholic and Dominican Institute at Mount Saint
- Achieved specialized accreditation for the Mount's academic
- Hired more full-time faculty and improved student/faculty
- Ranked a Tier 1 Regional University by U.S. News & World
- Created a fully online RN to BS degree program
- Introduced the interdisciplinary major in technology and
- Focused on academic and co-curricular environment
- Implemented a new sports management concentration of courses,
and expanded the inter-collegiate athletic programs, with 20
varsity teams this fall
The below video was shown in honor of Fr. Mackin at his farewell
reception on April 24.