Published April 12, 2012
For UB President Satish K. Tripathi, Wednesday’s “Conversation with the President” was an opportunity to reflect on major moments of the past 12 months while looking ahead to the excellence UB will achieve in the coming years.
Tripathi’s forum took place one week before the one-year anniversary of his appointment as president by the SUNY Board of Trustees. Tripathi said the past 12 months have been “an amazing year” and cited the following as highlights:
“These things don’t happen by chance,” Tripathi told the crowd gathered in the Center for the Arts Mainstage Theatre. “They are a product of our long-range vision—UB 2020—and the outcome of all of the hard work we’ve done together over the last several years. Everyone plays a part.”
In addition to touching on his “Three Es” of academic excellence, engagement and efficiency, Tripathi also talked about four major goals on which UB is focused: building upon the university’s foundation of research excellence; enhancing the educational experience for students; elevating UB’s stature both nationally and globally; and sharing its innovations with local and global communities for the greater good.
“At its heart, our vision is about academic excellence,” Tripathi said. “It begins with our faculty, who drive the research enterprise, contribute the discoveries and ideas that change the world around us for the better and educate the students who represent the future of these pursuits.”
That’s why, Tripathi said, it’s important to invest in UB’s faculty and the campus learning spaces that support their teaching. Growing the university’s faculty by between 250 and 300 over the next five years will bolster UB’s research, make the university more competitive, yield better faculty-to-student ratios, and create more course sections, which will allow students to graduate on time, according to Tripathi.
During his remarks, Tripathi also briefly addressed the topics of development and fundraising, faculty and student excellence, the state designation of the new Center of Excellence in Materials Informatics, and UB’s role as a catalyst for economic development in the Western New York region.
Specifically, Tripathi noted the accomplishments of three students: Esther Buckwalter, who won the 2012 Udall Scholarship; Dan Salem, who won the 2012 Goldwater Scholarship; and Matthew Zambito, who won the federally funded Critical Language Scholarship to study Turkish.
In addition, Tripathi highlighted UB’s commitment as a leader in campus sustainability, as evidenced by the opening of five Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) designed projects in the past two years.
“We’re not just planning; we are doing. We have been making a great deal of collective progress,” Tripathi said. “Now we need to sustain and build on this momentum.”
Tripathi stressed that UB’s successes are the result of the efforts of the entire campus community, and that future progress will rely heavily on the contributions of everyone, from the facilities team to the faculty.
“All of this … is a testament to the collective work and commitment of the entire campus community,” Tripathi said. “This is a pivotal time for UB. As UB grows in quality and stature, so will our impact.”
Added Tripathi, “As an institution, UB will continue to invest in excellence for our faculty, staff and students across the disciplines. In turn, every individual has an equally important part to play in this commitment.”