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Purpose and Grit
September 2, 2016

Note: The following is a transcript of remarks given at the 2016 President's Address to the Community. 

It has been a short but great summer. Really short. Really, really short.  It seems like RIT starts earlier with each passing academic year. Makes you wonder who is in charge of the academic calendar … oh, wait! …

The good news is that this is a summer of Olympics. We have been entertained with the vast array of different sports, records that were broken, and the stories behind the stories.  And then there are the athletes - like Simone Manuel, Simone Biles, Michael Phelps, or Ibtihaj Mohammed - with their incredible dedication, persistence, and passion.

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Welcome Back!
August 23, 2016

Note: This message was sent to all RIT faculty and staff August 23, 2016.

“A fixed mindset can also lead us to think that we don’t belong or that we can’t be good at a particular subject or we’re not qualified enough to be in a particular major or may even interfere with our ability to complete our college degree. And that’s a terribly sad outcome because, you know what, our institution and our nation wants and needs each of you complete your college degree. We need all of your ideas, energy and creativity because we have many complex problems to solve and it’s going to take all of us, working together, to solve them.”

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“Why fit in when you were born to stand out?” A guest post by Michael Laver
April 1, 2016

I am privileged to be able to “guest blog” for Provost Haefner on the subject of the Middle States Re-accreditation process currently underway at RIT.  Rather than drone on about this or that, or perhaps more accurately, in addition to droning on about this or that, I’ll try to frame our approach to re-accreditation using the timeless words and wisdom of Theodore Geisel, and I’ll start with the prescient observation (perhaps the truth of which is borne out from the observation of Rochester weather) that “From there to here and here to there, funny things are everywhere.” 

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On edX
March 11, 2016

"To boldly go … " -Captain James T. Kirk, Star Trek

You have to appreciate the simplicity of the mission of the USS Enterprise, Star Trek’s iconic starship: To boldly go where no one has gone before. When it comes to its teaching and learning mission, RIT shares this passion for exploration. It was, after all, the first institution to offer a number of unique degrees such as software engineering, microelectronics engineering, biotechnology, and a Ph.D. in imaging science to name a few. And in the 90s it was a leader in online education, offering one of the first online program in the country. Innovation and teaching go hand-in-hand at RIT. 

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On Mathematics, Star Trek, and James Joyce
February 10, 2016

"The more complex the mind, the greater the need for the simplicity of play." - Capt. James T. Kirk, "Shore Leave," Star Trek

When he was young, one of my sons (who will remain nameless to protect his innocence) had a propensity to collect things. By ‘collect things’, I don’t mean Beanie Babies, Magic Cards, or anything resembling a cow. Rather I mean anything small, usually shiny, that he could find on the sidewalk and put in his pocket. In parent terminology: trash.

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Welcome to Spring Semester 2016
January 27, 2016

Welcome back!

To our students, faculty and staff, I welcome all of you to the start of spring semester 2016. It seems out of sorts to say spring in January but on the other hand, El Niño has certainly made Rochester more spring-like than winter-like over the past few months. 

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Career-focused education is in our DNA
January 8, 2016

As we return from winter break, many students will be returning from, or beginning their co-ops. With that in mind, I’d like to take a moment to reflect on one of the “crown jewels” of an RIT degree: a career-focused, experiential learning opportunity for our students.

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The importance of a welcoming department
November 6, 2015

Last spring Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion Kevin McDonald and I hosted an informal luncheon for a number of our AALANA faculty who have succeeded in achieving tenure. It was a terrific conversation and, to be honest, very uplifting. Several of them talked about the mentoring they received from others, the collaborative spirit of their department, and how they felt they were supported in significant ways. 

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