In the news
Thank you for making my first year so rewarding. Across our university and nation, Jayhawks welcomed me into their classrooms, boardrooms and living rooms to discuss KU. These conversations were productive and honest, and they shaped my thinking about our university’s direction.
Beginning May 1, Rodolfo Torres will become our new interim vice chancellor for research. John Colombo — who has served in this role since last summer — will remain in the Office of Research to assist Rodolfo as an interim associate vice chancellor for research while gradually reducing his involvement with that office as key vacancies are filled.
On April 20, Chancellor Girod was officially installed as the university's 18th chancellor. In his inaugural address, he discussed his vision and priorities for KU.
I am pleased to announce Carl Lejuez, dean of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, as our interim provost and executive vice chancellor. Carl will begin his new role April 30 as current provost Neeli Bendapudi leaves KU to become president of the University of Louisville.
On April 4, Chancellor Girod delivered a presentation titled "The University of Kansas: Kansas City's research university" at the KCK Chamber annual meeting. The Chancellor focused on the university's Edwards and medical center campuses, as well as KU's partnership with the University of Kansas Health System.
The mission of the University of Kansas is to educate leaders, build healthy communities and make discoveries that change the world. Two weeks from today, we have an opportunity to see this mission on display in a special way.
I am writing to let you know that a key member of our executive team will be leaving the University of Kansas for a new opportunity. Earlier today, Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Neeli Bendapudi was named the new president of the University of Louisville. She is slated to begin her new role in May.
In recent weeks, a number of our fraternities have made headlines for being investigated, sanctioned or shut down. These and additional investigations suggest a systemic issue with misconduct that warrants our full attention and focus. And now we have an opportunity to launch a collaborative effort for multi-stakeholder engagement to aggressively address these issues together.
On Tuesday, February 20, friends around the world will come together to support the University of Kansas’ first-ever 24-hour giving campaign, One Day. One KU. In advance of this event, I want to thank you for the crucial role you play in our fundraising efforts. Donors support KU because they believe in the work you do to improve our state and society. For that, you have my sincere appreciation.
As we begin another semester at the University of Kansas, I want to update you on our efforts in Topeka and how we are fostering relationships across Kansas.
Welcome back, Jayhawks! I hope you had a joyful holiday season, and I trust you are ready for another productive year. With classes beginning today, I want to take a moment to look ahead to some of the highlights for the upcoming semester.
As our nation comes together to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., I find myself reflecting on the events in Charlottesville, Virginia, last August. It was a terrible weekend for our nation and a reminder that we have a long way to go if we are to fulfill Dr. King’s dream.
It is my pleasure to announce that Reggie Robinson has agreed to serve as our vice chancellor for public affairs. We are fortunate to have a leader of his experience and talents in this critical role for our campuses.
After careful consideration and in consultation with The University of Kansas Health System and The University of Kansas Physicians, I am pleased to announce Robert D. Simari, M.D., as the executive vice chancellor for the University of Kansas Medical Center.
Today, as our semester comes to a close, I would like to take a moment to reflect on my first six months in Strong Hall and thank you for your support.
Last week, we were delighted to learn that KU has earned a No. 5 national ranking in the Military Times Best: Colleges 2018 rankings. The rankings recognize schools that excel in providing services to students with military ties, have a military-inclusive campus, and have high academic achievement rates among these students.
In September, I joined Kansas Athletics Director Sheahon Zenger to announce a fundraising project focused on football. This project addresses the reality that a competitive football program is important to our university and that our outdated facilities hamper our ability to compete in the Big 12 Conference. Today I would like to update you on this project.
We often talk about how we educate leaders and how our work benefits people around the globe. This week, we will welcome Colombian Pres. Juan Manuel Santos back to campus as one of our distinguished alumni who has demonstrated outstanding leadership to end a long-running civil war in his native Colombia.
Last month, we were delighted to announce that enrollment at the University of Kansas has grown for the fourth straight year to its highest level since 2011. Additionally, this year’s freshmen have the highest average high school GPA and are the most diverse of any class in KU history. Retention and graduation rates are also higher than ever.
This past Friday, I joined Kansas Athletics Director Sheahon Zenger to announce Raise the Chant, a $350 million fundraising project focused on football. Today I’d like to discuss this exciting effort and why it needs to be one of KU’s institutional priorities.