Dr. Doris Tegart became interim president in Spring 2016 following the passing of former president, Dr. Joseph McGowan. The Concord will provide information from bi-weekly Q&A’s with faculty and staff to keep Bellarmine students informed. This is the second portion of an interview on September 13, 2016; some information regarding funding for Centro may have changed. For the most up to date information on Centro, see this issue’s cover story.

Q: How are things going with Centro, and other changes on campus, since we spoke about it previously?

A: We’ve got about $2.3 million left to go to finish up Centro for sure. We’re on a $100 million-dollar campaign, hopefully finishing up this year. We’re at about $92 million on that, so we’ve got $8 million left to go. Overall, it’s not that much, so we really hope to get to that as well. You probably saw in the paper that we got the $1.5 million—and I think that’s going to be very exciting. There’s such a direct effect, getting our student office and the nurses more time and being open, I mean we need that so badly. Also, it helps the analytics program as well so we did get that money.

Slowly but surely, I mean I think we have even gotten more this morning. There’s continual improvement and process and progress, but we’re still a little bit off from getting that done.

The St. Catharine folks are here. I think maybe the last time we talked, the wrestling team was coming, and they’re here. And also the radiation therapy, I mean it must be strange, you know, you’re at one school and now you’re here; it must be so different. It’s just a different place. So we’re having a gathering tonight for all of the St. Catharine’s students and all of the faculty that we hired from St. Catharine’s to say, “How are you doing? Is everything okay?” We’ve even hired the president from St. Catharine’s, and she’s fantastic.

Q: The last few school years have seen some of the most unique RSOs, with everything from a Harry Potter club to bass fishing. What were you involved in in your undergrad?

A: I went to Indiana State in Terre Haute, and we certainly did not have the wide variety of activities and so there seemed to be a lot more activities as a dorm floor, you know, in the residence halls. Certainly everybody went to sports, football and that kind of thing. But as far as clubs, I was in a women’s club. But it turned out to be the “dinner party women’s club.” They would try wigs on and [I thought] “Well, this probably wasn’t what I was thinking. In the 70s I was like um, okay! (laughs). This isn’t about women’s rights or anything like that. It was just like a beauty session or something, you know? That’s what I can remember doing as groups, but I volunteered. I was in the education department, so there was a lot of volunteering in the schools around there, tutoring and that kind of thing.

Q: When you aren’t on campus or doing a Bellarmine related thing, what do you do?

A: There isn’t much that is not a “Bellarmine thing” (laughs). You know, last weekend was the Black Student Union picnic, the volleyball games, went to field hockey games on Friday. Really, what I do is get ready to come back to Bellarmine.

We do like the urban living, and that’s why we moved there, so we can just go outside our door and take a walk down Main Street. When we get ready for dinner we’re like, “Okay, where are we eating?” We just go outside or we go to BBC, so I think that’s really cool. Fourth Street Live we can walk to, and for New Year’s Eve, I think it’s fun. You can hear all the noises and the screaming and the shouting and the car racing. I like that. I think it’s really fun. A lot of it’s devoted to my grandson. I have one grandson and he’s 10 years old, so he’s fun. And when we do go out of town, we go to visit my daughter who does her thing in New York. She’s a comedy writer there. She has a show now at the Upright Citizens Brigade called “The Female Gaze.”

Q: This semester, The Concord has started a new column called “Bite Out of Bardstown,” and I know that you love to eat. Where do you go and what do you cook?

A: We love Mexican food and the guy who has the restaurant on Frankfort Avenue; I think it’s now called El Ramiro’s. We eat there. We love Mimosa’s; we take out from there. We like the Greek place on Frankfort, the Grape Leaf. In downtown, we eat Impellizzeri’s, O’Shea’s—all of those are close. My best friend is a good Italian cook. She lives in St. Louis, but she comes over quite often and fixes a big Italian meal, which we all love.

Q: With this full school year ahead of you, what are you excited about?

A: Well, I’m excited about it all. Any change that happens, it’s a change in culture whether we want it or not. I think it’s harder for some than for others. I’ve tried to do a lot of things for faculty and staff and be involved in everything I can. For a long time at Bellarmine, I haven’t had a relationship with students because that has just not been my role. That has already been the most rewarding thing for me: to get to every student event that I can possibly go to, so I’m excited about that.

I’ve had relationships with faculty and staff but the whole reason for our being, I can get back into that as well. So that’s just been great to get to know some folks and listen. And I plan to have more folks over to our house. And what I like about having folks over to our house is that we can have appetizers there and then hit the streets. We can go anywhere we want to eat and then we come back for dessert at our house.

Q: Are there any additional updates or anything you would like students to know about?

A: I saw you did something on the roundabout, so they know about that, that’s good (laughs). I’m just excited about how students are coming forward and really volunteering and signing up for RSOs. I was really impressed. I look forward to listening this year, more than saying: “We’re going to do this, we’re going to do that.” I really want to hear what students have to say about what’s going on.

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