Excellence in education, cutting-edge research, and innovative community partnerships
Dr. John Green sent this message to faculty, staff and students on his first day as interim president, May 1, 2018.
Today I begin my duties and responsibilities as interim president of our University. Today also is “signing day,” the semi-official national deadline for prospective freshmen to confirm their enrollment with the university or college they plan to attend in the fall. That coincidence seems a fitting reminder that even as we busy ourselves with today’s tasks, new opportunities and responsibilities lie just ahead.
It is an honor to serve as your interim president, and I am grateful for the opportunity to give back to the institution that has been so good to me and my family for more than three decades. I am intensely proud to be a University of Akron faculty member, with many good friends and colleagues.
The work ahead of us has been made easier thanks to President Matthew Wilson who put us back on the right track with his intense focus on students and their needs. We will continue the momentum we achieved under Matt’s invaluable leadership.
That means bringing to fruition those major initiatives already underway. The Five Star Fridays academic schedule will be ready this fall. This program will provide new opportunities for our students and further differentiate our University from other state and private institutions in this region.
Another key focus in the months ahead will be the completion of the faculty-led academic program review process. Our colleagues have done a terrific job on this critical assessment, which we hope to conclude this month. Over the summer, senior administration will interpret the data produced. Then we will recommend to the Board investments into our areas of excellence, disinvestments that may be needed, new degree programs, and other innovative ways we can serve the community.
The academic program review will inform another vital initiative, the development of a revised strategic plan. Surely everyone on this campus has thought about where we should be in three to five years, but to move forward effectively, we need a comprehensive, strategic plan that can be followed step by step, and adjusted as needed.
Finally, I will do everything I can to help the Board of Trustees in their search for a new president. We can all contribute to this process by improving our University, making it even more appealing to quality candidates, and preparing a foundation that offers the next president, whomever he or she will be, a great chance to succeed.
Everyone should know that The University of Akron is open, ready and excited to be about our business. And our business is excellence in education, cutting-edge research, and innovative community partnerships.
This is a great institution with a bright future.