He did great things for UDM
UDM bids farewell and best wishes to President Gerard Stockhausen, S.J., as he leaves UDM to embark on a new leadership role with the Jesuit Conference
University of Detroit Mercy President Gerard L. Stockhausen, S.J., Ph.D., will leave UDM at the end of the school year to assume the position of executive assistant to the president of the Jesuit Conference and director of planning for the Jesuit Conference in Washington, D.C.
Fr. Stockhausen’s 10-year tenure at UDM—four years as academic vice president and six years as president—is distinguished by a long list of accomplishments, including increased enrollment and academic programs, financial stability, and a new dental school facility, but he will also be remembered for his quiet leadership that poised the University for a successful future. It’s no surprise that the Jesuit Conference tapped Fr. Stockhausen to help lead the Jesuits as they are facing a time of transition.“Fr. Stockhausen has a proven track record in creating and implementing a dynamic vision during his 10 years at the University of Detroit Mercy,” says Thomas Krettek, S.J., provincial superior of the Wisconsin Province. “In calling him to this new ministry on behalf of the Society of Jesus, I am confident that he will apply these same talents in helping the 10 Jesuit provinces achieve their strategic plan for a more effective apostolic service.”
The Jesuit Conference serves as the national organization of the 10 Jesuit provinces in the United States. In this new role, Fr. Stockhausen will serve as chief of staff, advising and working closely with the president of the Jesuit Conference and his staff to lead, direct, and coordinate a series of planning projects that will implement the apostolic choices made by the national and international Society of Jesus over the last few years.
“During his tenure at UDM, Fr. Stockhausen led the University with a laser focus on mission, ministry, and growth,” says Board of Trustees Vice Chair Rosita Schiller, RSM. “His commitment to the educational traditions of the founding sponsors (Sisters of Mercy and Jesuits), academic excellence, service, and the City of Detroit has garnered strong support among students, faculty and staff, alumni, and the business community. We will especially miss his unique ability to fuse his priestly ministry with academic administration.”
UDM experienced increases in both enrollment and academic stature during Fr. Stockhausen’s tenure. The University realized record enrollments in the School of Architecture, School of Dentistry, College of Health Professions and Nursing, and in the Sciences. In addition, the School of Law enrollment more than doubled. The full-time student enrollment grew by 37 percent during this period. The 2008 and 2009 freshman fall classes are the highest incoming classes since the consolidation of University of Detroit and Mercy College of Detroit in 1990 to form the University of Detroit Mercy. In addition, freshman ACT scores have increased from 20.7 to 23.9 during the past six years and the University is consistently ranked in the top tier of Midwestern master’s universities by U.S.News & World Report.
Under Fr. Stockhausen’s presidency, more than a dozen new academic programs were also established, including five-year undergraduate/graduate programs in Business Administration, Physician Assistant, Teacher Education, Engineering and Chemistry. A new Doctor of Nursing Practice was recently approved to begin later this year and a Bachelor of Architectural Engineering is scheduled to begin September 2010. Fr. Stockhausen also created the Office of Mission & Identity and hired a permanent director for the Catholic Studies Program to further enhance the University’s Catholic identity.
The University received wide-spread acclaim for its hosting of the NCAA Men’s Basketball Regional Final in 2008 and the NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four in 2009. Both events realized NCAA record attendance.
From 2005 to 2009, the University achieved five straight years of surplus budgets. Also during this period, the University experienced strong fund-raising results, with particular growth in planned gifts. The University has expanded its outreach to alumni nationally and experienced an increase in donors in 2009.
Fr. Stockhausen has also focused on enhancing University facilities for greater student satisfaction. Significant building renovations and an improved internal campus ring road were completed on the McNichols Campus. Plus, a new track & field and a new tennis complex were installed to accommodate three new sports teams: men’s and women’s lacrosse and men’s tennis. In 2007, the University moved its School of Dentistry from its former Outer Drive Campus to a larger facility in Corktown in order to expand student enrollment and increase the scope of dental care to patients.
As an advocate for Detroit, Fr. Stockhausen has worked to improve its neighborhoods by serving as chair of the Board of Directors of University Commons, a northwest Detroit community organization comprised of neighborhood associations, Livernois Avenue businesses, Marygrove College and UDM. The organization works to improve the residential and business environment in the area.
Fr. Stockhausen also implemented the UDM Employee Homeownership Program to encourage employees to purchase a home in the neighborhoods surrounding UDM’s three campuses. Through a variety of clinics and outreach programs, the University provides professional services and assistance to approximately 12,000 community members annually.
Fr. Stockhausen has served as a director on the boards of Detroit Downtown, Detroit Economic Club, Detroit Economic Growth Corporation and New Detroit. He is also a trustee for Loyola Jesuit High School in Detroit and a board director for Wheeling Jesuit University and Creighton University.
“I am most grateful for my 10 years here at UDM,” says Fr. Stockhausen. “I am proud to say that UDM is a better and stronger school today than it was 10 years ago, but it will be very hard to leave all the friends I have made here and all the people who have worked so hard to make UDM an excellent educational experience for our students. On the other hand, I am eager to accept this new assignment and the opportunities it brings to make a positive difference for the Jesuits and their apostolic works throughout the United States.”
Fr. Stockhausen holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Michigan; a master’s degree in social ethics and a Master of Divinity degree from the Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley, California; and a master’s degree in mathematics and a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from St. Louis University.
The UDM Board of Trustees has selected Academic Search, a national recruitment firm for higher education, for the selection of
Fr. Stockhausen’s successor.