October 10, 2017 // Diocese

Father David Tyson, CSC, inaugurated president of Holy Cross College

NOTRE DAME – Father David Theodore Tyson, CSC, was installed as the fifth president of Holy Cross College on Oct. 6, amid festivities that extended into a two-day schedule that included his investiture ceremony, social events with students and faculty and a Mass celebrated by Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades.

The new president of Holy Cross College, Father David Tyson, CSC, addresses the audience during his installation ceremony Oct. 6. Father Tyson, who will serve for a period of five years, is the fifth president of the educational institution. — Photos by Lizzet Aleman

On Thursday, Oct. 5, Father Tyson hosted a presidential picnic on behalf of students. At 7 p.m., the 2017 Delta Epsilon Sigma academic honors society induction took place in Driscoll Auditorium. Friday’s events began with the Mass, celebrated at 10 a.m. in the St. Joseph Chapel on the campus of Holy Cross College.

During the inauguration Mass, Bishop Rhoades took the opportunity to both pray for the success of the mission on which Father Tyson was to embark, and to express joy over it.

“I have known Father Tyson since I came to the diocese almost eight years ago, and we worked closely together when he served as the provincial superior of the Indiana, now U.S., Congregation of Holy Cross,” he began. “To the board of trustees, I think you made an excellent choice. I not only wish to congratulate Father Tyson, but to congratulate all of you today as you move forward together under the leadership of your new president.

“‘Lord, give success to the work of our hands,’” Bishop Rhoades continued. “In praying this psalm today, what is the success we pray for? Of course, we pray for the success of Father Tyson as president and we pray for the success of Holy Cross College. But what kind of success? And how will it be measured? There are many ways to define success when we are dealing with institutions of higher learning. One can measure success by graduation rates, for example, or by admissions and enrollment, or by finances and endowment growth. … But the success that is most important and which I pray for today is related to mission … the reason Holy Cross College was founded, its reason for being, its purpose.

“The mission of every college and university is to educate,” the bishop elucidated, adding that, “Authentic education, therefore, is about the search for truth.”

“I pray, Father Tyson, that the Lord will give success to the work of your hands as president of Holy Cross College, success in leading this community in fidelity to its great mission and in securing the means needed to accomplish its holy mission,” he concluded.

As St. Joseph, the patron saint of the Catholic Church, watched over and protected Jesus and Mary, Bishop Rhoades asked that he watch over and protect the church; and specifically, over Father Tyson as he leads Holy Cross College not only as its president, but as its spiritual father.

An installation ceremony took place in the Pfeil Recreation Center following the Mass. Following the installation, the public had the opportunity to meet Father Tyson at a reception on the O’Connor Commons. To conclude the inaugural events, Father Tyson invited students to attend a ball on the O’Connor Commons after dinner.

Father Tyson, a 1970 graduate of the University of Notre Dame with a bachelor’s degree in sociology, earned his Master of Theology from Notre Dame in 1974, and a doctorate in higher education administration from Indiana University Bloomington in 1980. Father Tyson took his final vows in 1974 and was ordained at Sacred Heart Basilica at Notre Dame in 1975.

Immediately prior to coming to Holy Cross College, Father Tyson served as director of nonprofit professional development at the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business. He has had a long, distinguished career in education as a professor, administrator, and president, as well as provincial superior of the Indiana Province of Holy Cross. 

Father Tyson was named interim president of Holy Cross College on April 7. At that time, David Bender, chairman of the Holy Cross College board of trustees, said in a news release: “Father Tyson’s life-long passion for Catholic education and his keen understanding of the mission of the college make him an ideal leader to help Holy Cross College flourish. We have every confidence that he will serve the college skillfully and faithfully.” Father Tyson was formally elected the fifth president of the college in a unanimous vote of the board of trustees on July 31.

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