What is your proudest accomplishment as leader of your university?
Experiencing the largest graduating class in the University’s history in 2017-18. Not only was the class the largest – it was also the most diverse, academically capable, and global in the University’s 149-year tenure as the people’s Land-Grant University of Nebraska. I anticipate having that same joy with the 2018-19 graduating class.
What makes your university great?
We believe in the power of every person and their potential to stretch their strengths and do big things. Also, the people in our university community across our state and beyond deeply care about our university and the opportunity we create in Nebraska and around the world.
What experience best prepared you to lead a public research university?
I have had the good fortune of serving in leadership roles in academia, government, and private industry – I draw upon experience from all of them every day.
What is your favorite way to spend your free time?
I am an agriculturalist at heart – so I manage to find a way to be working outside with soil, plants, animals, and natural resources. I like to grow things.
What is the best book you’ve read recently?
Jon Meacham’s The Soul of America: Searching for Our Better Angels – I read it twice as it was very insightful as a leader in higher education in contemporary times.
If you could travel to one place you’ve never visited, where would it be and why?
I have been blessed to travel widely around the world during my career and have experienced many wonderful places, people, and cultures. The next two I have on my “bucket list” are: 1) Israel and the Holy Land and 2) Tibet. The first as the home of Judaism and of Christianity. The second as the ancestral home of the Dalai Lama.