Howell Raines became the executive editor of The New York Times,
he urged his colleagues to make what many would consider to be the worlds
best newspaper even better. The veteran journalist exhorted his colleagues
to raise the competitive metabolism of the Times. Not
long after, his staff responded to a milestone moment, the terrible events
of September 11, 2001, with work that would earn an unprecedented seven
Pulitzer Prizes. Such excellence when it mattered most was ample proof
that the chief executives challenge had been taken to heart.
I owe Howell Raines a debt of thanks because Ive borrowed his phrase
raising the competitive metabolism to describe
a mindset that must become second nature as we shape the future of the
University of Vermont. Mr. Rainess words are as apt for Vermont
as they were for the Times because they denote a spirit of heightened
aspiration, expectation, and action that is not layered upon an organization
but infused within it the sort of commitment that is essential
to moving our beloved University forward.
Im deeply pleased to report evidence that our metabolism is swift.
Weve moved ahead on he purchase of the Trinity College campus, an
acquisition that gives us much-needed space for the present and future.
We continue to make rapid progress on the establishment of a University-wide
Honors College, an initiative that will help us draw more of the very
best students and enrich the overall undergraduate academic experience.
Further invigorating the intellectual and cultural life of the University,
weve created a Presidents Lecture Series that will bring some
of the outstanding minds of our era to campus for public talks and smaller-scale
interactions with faculty and students.
As we continue to move ahead, alumni have an essential role in shaping
and nurturing our progress. I urge you to tell a great high school student
to check us out; to make a gift to the University in recognition of the
difference it made in your life; and to reconnect by visiting us at Reunion
this spring. Increasingly, my duties take me on the road to spread the
word about the great things happening at Vermont, and I look forward to
meeting many of you on those travels and to seeing many others here at
home. Until then, thank you for your loyal support of the University of
Daniel Mark Fogel