Remarks as prepared for delivery
It is a pleasure to welcome all of you here today for this historic event, and I want to give a special welcome to those of you visiting the University of Kansas for the first time.
KU was founded exactly 150 years ago as the flagship university for the State of Kansas. Over the decades, we have educated leaders for our state, nation, and world – from astronauts and Fortune 500 CEOs, to actors and teachers, engineers and journalists.
We’ve contributed to the health and vitality of communities around the globe, whether through the service of a small-town doctor or pharmacist, the creation of new jobs at a startup company, or the sharing of the arts and humanities with audiences from community theaters to Carnegie Hall.
And KU discoveries have truly changed the world. Helium was isolated for the first time just up the hill. The time-release capsule was invented here, joining the countless treatments and cures developed by our scientists. And every day our scholars are uncovering everything from new species to new ways of understanding our history. All of this in service of our mission to lift students and society.
Now, it has been more than a century since the last sitting president visited KU, though we’ve welcomed five former presidents, and not long ago were visited by KU graduate Juan Manuel Santos, president of the Republic of Colombia. It’s been a long wait, but I think wait has been worth it now that we can finally welcome an American President with a version of what Teddy Roosevelt called the best college cheer he’d ever heard.
Barack Chalk, Jayhawk!
It is my pleasure to say…the President of the United States...will be here in a few minutes.
Rock Chalk, Jayhawks!