The fall semester at the University of Michigan is in full swing, and our community of students, faculty and staff are enthusiastic in pursuing opportunities to make an impact.
Our schools, colleges, institutes and academic programs are the foundation of my goals for advancing academic excellence and impact at the University of Michigan.
They provide the strength that propels us forward and give U-M the unparalleled opportunity to tap into comprehensive strength, leverage our breadth, and collaborate across disciplines in service of our students and society at large.
At my annual Leadership Breakfast earlier this month, I announced new initiatives that involve our full academic portfolio and align with my primary focus: to position U-M for perpetual excellence and public impact in everything we do.
These announcements also follow my commitment to encourage scholarship that addresses major societal problems, while providing the best education possible for our students. A few of them are:
- Poverty Solutions at the University of Michigan is a new multidisciplinary initiative to inform, seek out, and test new strategies for preventing and alleviating poverty.
- Our Academic Innovation Initiative will formally help us consider how we can use technology and data analytics to strengthen the quality of a Michigan education (inside and outside of the classroom) and enhance our impact on society.
- A revolutionary new kind of school will replace our School of Natural Resources and Environment. It will be structured to encourage collaborations across the university, be organized around themes that evolve over time, and present curricula that intensely engages faculty and students in the many aspects of the environmental stewardship, including economics, policy, sustainability and resource management.
We were very proud to roll out the University of Michigan’s campus-wide strategic plan to enhance diversity, equity and inclusion. A video of the launch events is available online. The plan follows a more than a year of deeply engaged examination of how we can better uphold the inseparable and cherished U-M values of excellence and diversity.
The title of the plan is Many Voices, Our Michigan. It includes metrics, reporting schedules and measures of accountability – and it’s also a pledge that we will be relentless in our efforts to understand how we can better enhance diversity, equity and inclusion at the University of Michigan.
I invite you to learn more about our new initiatives and our strategic plan for diversity, equity and inclusion on my website. As leaders in the communities we serve, your support and involvement helps to drive our pursuit of new discoveries, greater understanding, excellence and impact. In addition, I encourage you to view the many ways we are having an impact across our state.
Thank you for your support of the University of Michigan, our students and our public mission.
Mark S. Schlissel