Message from the President


Susan ScrimshawThis is an exciting time for The Sage Colleges as we prepare for our Centennial in 2016. Margaret Olivia Slocum Sage founded Russell Sage College in 1916 with the mission of educating women to be scholars, professionals, and leaders. Over the past hundred years her empowering and prescient vision has seen Russell Sage College prosper and grow.  With help from the extraordinary Eliza Kellas, she created a women’s college which has grown in scope, strength and visibility. A college that was founded to serve a population which was excluded from the male colleges of the time continues to provide access to education for a diverse group of students.  Russell Sage College evolved graduate programs which became graduate schools of Education, Health Sciences and Management, developed adult and on line education, and gave birth to a community college which became the four-year co-ed college that is Sage College of Albany. Today, under the banner of The Sage Colleges, these institutions exist uniquely and cooperatively to educate and to transform lives.

On the threshold of our Centennial, we have the opportunity to reflect and envision what a second century holds for Sage. That reimagining will challenge our thinking, our methodologies, our physical spaces and our resources. It will be an exciting journey. As a crucial part of this centennial celebration and planning for our future, we have embarked on the most ambitious comprehensive fundraising campaign we have ever undertaken. Our goal for our 100th birthday is $50 million dollars. To date, we have raised over $40 million dollars toward that goal from generous donors, with 83% of that total coming from our amazing alumni.

Through these leadership gifts we have increased Sage’s endowment by 30% with gifts that support academic scholarship and programs. We have also been able to make improvements to our campus facilities – transforming our Troy library space into the state-of-the-art Shea Learning Center, enhancing labs in Esteves Science Hall in Albany, updating the School of Health Science’s new SIM (Simulation) Center, providing renovations to the Armory at Sage, building the new Manor Nutrition Lab and creating several wonderful new garden spaces.  It is vital that we continue to provide the resources for our students to have the best possible educational experience. We are so grateful to every donor who has had a part in laying the groundwork for a successful campaign. They inspire all of us to do MORE.

Our motto “To Be. To Know. To Do,” expresses the timeless imperatives that underscore our values of self-discovery and excellence, the rigorous pursuit of knowledge, and the responsibility to engage in meaningful and constructive ways in local and global communities. For our campaign we have added the word “MORE” to our motto. “Be. Know. Do. MORE.” For Sage to step creatively and ambitiously into the next century will require MORE from all of us – MORE imagination, MORE innovation, MORE risk taking, MORE opportunity, MORE engagement, MORE resources, MORE investment, MORE of what brought us to this moment. MORE is both an affirmation of our past and a challenge for the future.

In a world where the space between new to obsolete is a nano-second, the staying power of an institution to remain and evolve over a century, while staying relevant, is inspirational. Margaret Olivia Slocum Sage gave us the gift of Russell Sage College and we take great pride in the education we have provided to women for almost a century. She may not have imagined what Sage would look like in a hundred years, but our founders and leaders have had the wisdom and courage to allow us to grow and evolve into the diverse and strong academic institution we are today, carrying on the same mission of educating and transforming lives.  I’m certain she would be proud of that accomplishment. On the brink of our 100th birthday we are poised to grow in spectacular ways we can’t even now imagine if we never let go of that insatiable desire for MORE for Sage.  So please join me on the exciting journey into our next century with your enthusiasm, your imagination, your resources, and your commitment.

Happy 100th Birthday Sage!




Susan C. Scrimshaw, Ph.D.