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My mouth is sore from continually extracting my foot from it.
– Gordon Gee
The strength of the American higher education system is that it is a multifaceted, multi-layered system, and that is what makes us very strong.
In a very complex world, you can no longer expect everyone to be great at everything.
I am trying to prioritize and keep everything in balance, which for me is not easy.
I believe everything learned in college is an answer to a question that someone has posed. Questions get posed differently and the answers that come back transport us to places we never knew existed.
I joke that being a university president is akin to being a pinata. But there are also notions of redemption.
I got all sorts of great Nebraska jokes.
Sitting on a corporate board is a hobby for me.
College graduates work in every sector of the American economy, and the research engines incubated within our universities generate a wealth of ideas and innovations that have an enormous impact on our lives.
I spent the first 18 years of my life in the pastoral town of Vernal, Utah, in the shadows of the Book Cliffs and the Uinta Mountains.
I believe that it is higher education’s purpose and calling to keep open the door to the American dream.
So if a college education is indispensable, the challenge as I see it is how to make it more accessible.
I’m the seventh chancellor at Vanderbilt; Bobby Johnson is the 25th head football coach. That shows a lack of commitment to attract and retain.
The Ohio State University has a rich – if quiet – heritage of the arts.
Founded when Abraham Lincoln believed education could lead the nation out of its darkest days, Ohio State now provides a powerful platform of interdisciplinary academic programs, world-class scholars, outstanding students, and extensive research capabilities.
The arts, quite simply, nourish the soul. They sustain, comfort, inspire. There is nothing like that exquisite moment when you first discover the beauty of connecting with others in celebration of larger ideals and shared wisdom.
You have great athletic directors, you let them run it; you keep yourself informed, but I’m not the athletic director. I’m the president of the university.
I simply take serious issues seriously, but I do not take myself seriously.
I believe we have the best football coach in the country in Urban Meyer. I had the privilege of hiring him, as you know, and I think he is doing fabulous work.
I believe being president of a private institution is a remarkable experience, but at Ohio State, it’s a calling.
Continue to surprise those who would put you in a neat demographic. Be insistently curious.
To be sure, American higher education is a diverse ecosystem, comprising institutions of all sizes, price tags, and mission statements.
I often have said that to be a college president, you need a thick skin, a good sense of humor, and nerves like sewer pipes.
We play very fine schools on any given day.
I love this university, and although I might be retiring from the presidency, my work with Ohio State will continue.
I have a passion for academic life, a passion for students and for the ability and the narrative of a university to make a difference in the world in which they reside.
I think everyone needs to focus on the quality of the undergraduate experience.
At least for me, I believe that one learns from one’s mistakes. And I made significant mistakes, and I learned from them.
Everyone wrote our obituary but us and the coaches and the kids who stayed with us. The obit was, ‘Vanderbilt will have to leave the Southeastern Conference. All the coaches are leaving, and all the students are transferring.’
In tumultuous times, it’s important to have a very mature leader.