- Nathan O. Hatch becomes Wake Forest’s 13th president on July 1, with official inauguration Oct. 20 in Wait Chapel.
- Hatch announces a strategic planning process to “build upon existing strengths and identify areas where we need to improve.”
- Voices of Our Time speaker series begins.
- Plans are announced to raise $10 million for a Presidential Trust for Faculty Excellence.
- Entrepreneurship and social enterprise minor is added, one of 10 minors and eight majors created during the Hatch administration.
- Wake Forest begins programs in Washington, D.C., through The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars.
- Test-optional policy for applicants takes effect as Wake Forest becomes the first top-30 national university not to require SAT or ACT exams.
- Deacon Tower (later renamed McCreary Tower) opens, the first of an array of new athletics facilities, including McCreary Field House, Sutton Sports Performance Center and Shah Basketball Complex.
- Hatch unveils a strategic plan to build on Wake Forest’s strengths as a “collegiate university” to become “an extraordinary place in American higher education.”
- The undergraduate Calloway School of Business and Accountancy and the Babcock Graduate School of Management combine to become the Wake Forest School of Business.
- A redesign of career services births the Office of Personal and Career Development, which becomes a top college-to-career program.
- Magnolia Scholars program begins for first-generation college students.
- The Character Project is created to research character and how to include it in curricula.
- South Residence Hall, the first LEED-certified building with environmental benefits on the Reynolda Campus, opens.
- The Humanities Institute launches.
- Porter B. Byrum Welcome Center opens.
- A requirement that undergraduates live on campus their first three years takes effect.
- Wake Forest Biotech Place opens downtown.
- The graduate business education program, in Charlotte since 1995, opens Wake Forest University Charlotte Center at 200 N. College St.
- The Interdisciplinary Performance and the Liberal Arts Center (IPLACe) is created. It’s now the Interdisciplinary Arts Center.
- Faces of Courage celebrates 50 years of integration with a yearlong series of events to commemorate and honor those who contributed to a diverse Wake Forest.
- Hatch becomes chair of the NCAA Division I Board of Directors during a tumultuous time.
- “Wake Will: The Campaign for Wake Forest” kicks off with a $600 million goal for scholarships, faculty support and new and improved facilities.
- Farrell Hall opens to house the School of Business.
- Dogwood and Magnolia residence halls open.
- The first Presidential Endowed Chair, recognizing faculty who represent the teacher-scholar ideal, goes to historian Michele Gillespie, now dean of the College. (Nine more presidential chairs were added in the Hatch years.)
- Thrive, a comprehensive wellbeing initiative, launches to inspire students’ emotional, spiritual, physical and social wellbeing.
- Hatch is inducted into the prestigious American Academy of Arts & Sciences.
- A Summer Immersion Program opens for high school students.
- The School of Medicine moves its medical education programs into Innovation Quarter in downtown Winston-Salem.
- Buoyed by momentum, Wake Will becomes Wake Will Lead, extending the capital campaign goal to $1 billion by 2020.
- Wake Forest joins the Universities Studying Slavery consortium.
- Wake Downtown in Innovation Quarter offers new undergraduate programs in biomedical sciences and engineering.
- The Program for Leadership and Character begins.
- The Wake Washington Center at One Dupont Circle, home to a “study abroad” program in the nation’s capital, celebrates its grand opening.
- Hatch begins Call to Conversation dinners, which launch nationally a year later.
- A study-abroad program for first-year students opens in Copenhagen.
- Wake Forest receives $70 million for scholarships from the late Porter Byrum (JD ‘42), the largest gift in the University’s history.
- The new residence hall honoring Maya Angelou (L.H.D. ’77) is dedicated.
- Reynolda Cabinet expands to include the chief diversity officer.
- The three-year project to transform the 1950s Reynolds Gym into a health and wellbeing center is complete.
- Hatch forms the President’s Commission on Race, Equity and Community to illuminate University history.
- A study shows the University ranks fourth among U.S. doctoral colleges and universities in percentage of students studying abroad.
- Wake Will Lead campaign exceeds its $1 billion goal, having created more than 50 endowed professorships, funded renovations and new buildings, provided scholarship dollars to 1 in 5 undergraduates, lowered student debt by 30% and added nearly $400 million to the endowment.
- Hatch, on behalf of the University, apologizes “for participating in and benefitting from the institution of slavery … and for the exploitation and use of enslaved people.” The University’s Slavery, Race and Memory Project publishes essays about Wake Forest ties to slavery.
- Hatch, trustees and the campus community mobilize to deal with extraordinary challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure a safe return for the 2020-21 academic year.
- Atrium Health and Wake Forest Baptist Health, including the School of Medicine, merge as Atrium Health and announce plans to add a medical school campus in Charlotte.
- Trustees approve a new School of Professional Studies in Charlotte.
- An anonymous $1 million gift creates the Dr. Dolly A. McPherson Fund for African American Studies to help establish the new major and minor.
- Hatch receives the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, North Carolina’s highest civilian service award.
NOTE: The timeline above is part of a larger feature celebrating Dr. Hatch’s tenure at Wake Forest. You can read the full story by clicking the link below:
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A Leader of Character
Embracing values, tradition and innovation, President Nathan O. Hatch challenged his team and Wake Foresters to make history.