Community Meeting: 2-23-12

President’s Community Meeting
February 23, 2012

“Today, for the first time in four years, I have nothing to say about the budget!” declared President William Kelly at the community meeting on February 23. He added, “This gives us a chance to look forward rather than to simply adjust numbers.”

Kelly drew attention to the Graduate Center’s “Strategic Plan,” which seeks to chart a future for the institution over the next five years in response to fiscal uncertainty and decreasing investment in public higher education. Within the next few years, said the president, the Graduate Center will “focus intensely” on readying current and future doctoral students for the ever-changing “landscape of American higher education.” The plans include increasing financial aid, pursuing competitive funding, and establishing an Office for Professional Development and Placement, which will provide support in preparing résumés and expanding employment opportunities.

Among Kelly’s other goals is “enhancing our research culture . . . everything from extending the transdisciplinary approach that we initiated with funding from the Mellon Foundation to investing in a variety of new faculty positions and supporting selected centers and institutes.”

“We’re also pursuing other capital projects that have nothing to do with our operating costs,” said the president. Because of available city and state money “designed to spur the economy by creating construction jobs,” the GC is currently undertaking a project that involves expanding the ninth floor and rooftop areas. “We will build out the ninth floor as a public gathering space, and a stairway will go up to the roof, leading to a glass pavilion.”

Future fundraising opportunities will enable the GC to “green” the roof and improve the building’s sustainability, while lowering energy costs.

For more information on the future of the GC and President Kelly’s Strategic Plan, visit:

Submitted on: FEB 28, 2012

Category: President's Office - Community Meeting