Dear Alumni and Friends,

Nine months ago, I sent you a message during a difficult time for our University of Michigan community. I had just accepted the Board of Regents’ request to serve as president for a short period while the search for a new president commenced.

What I knew then – and what has been reinforced time and again since January – is that when U-M faces a challenge, we seek solutions. We focus on tomorrow. Our mission as a public research university endures. 

I’m proud of the work that so many people have put into making U-M even stronger during this time of transition. Here are just a few examples:

  • The university’s total research volume increased by 8.4% over the past fiscal year to a record $1.71 billion in expenditures, contributing $97 million to Michigan’s economy. 
  • U-M improved its processes and structures for addressing sexual misconduct by adopting recommendations from a nationally recognized consulting firm focused on addressing sexual and gender-based misconduct. 
  • The Ann Arbor campus once again received a record number of first-year applications for this academic year, signaling our continued value to the students and families of Michigan and beyond.

I will step down next month as President-elect Santa Ono, the president and vice chancellor of the University of British Columbia, will become U-M’s 15th president on Oct. 14. I feel good knowing that Dr. Ono will soon join a university community that has maintained its positive momentum, committed itself to building a culture that fosters trust and, above all, remained focused on having a positive impact on society.

It’s part of what makes the University of Michigan such a special place. 

Thank you for your continued support over these past nine months, and Forever Go Blue.