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Beth Paul

President, Nazareth College

Years in current role: 1.5

What was your biggest success in 2021?

Nazareth College has been unstoppable, as we have navigated the worldwide challenges of 2021. We were able to continue our in-person learning and residential living for the importance of our student experience, as well as our many forms of experiential learning throughout the Rochester community. Our college community is nimble and strong and I am deeply grateful.

What are your expectations for 2022?

The times in which we are living are filled with challenge and opportunity, inspiring Nazareth to reach forward in educating future changemakers. Since its beginning in 1924, Nazareth has opened pathways of education for a diverse array of students, inspiring them to stretch their potential and apply their talents to social innovation, social progress and social justice — to be changemakers. At our 2022 commencement, we will be sending hundreds of new changemakers into our community and beyond!

What is your biggest takeaway from dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic?

As a psychologist and the president of a College, I see the ways in which the last two years have strained mental health. The multiple traumas of 2020 and 2021 have starkly interrupted this critical time of learning and growth for every student, and for the faculty and staff who educate them. Higher education plays a critical role in healing and rejuvenating our youth. College is a vital gateway for many individuals in the critical transition from adolescence to adulthood, setting the stage for productive adulthood. Our youth need supportive and inspiring in-person interaction to learn – academically, socially and emotionally – and to prepare them for their life’s work and well-being.

What is your favorite thing about the Rochester community?

Rochester is a community of people who see the best in others. I witness it each day on the Nazareth campus, and in so many interactions around the city. I am inspired by the people who care deeply and work every day to help Rochester be a place of health, opportunity and possibility for all.

If time were no issue, what would you do to help the community that you aren’t already doing?

Joining a community during a once-in-a-century pandemic has been challenging. I am still learning about our city and meeting the beautiful diversity of people who make up our community. My passion is guiding young people through their development, so they emerge into adulthood with dreams, possibilities and skills to attain them. I am eager to get more involved in this work on a person-to-person level as well as systemically in further strengthening our community.

This profile is part of Rochester Business Journal's Power 100 list for 2022. Information used in this profile was sourced from the honoree. View the full list at


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