2017 News


Today, Tomorrow, Together

February 20, 2017
University Pavilion, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio



Dear UC Community,

For 26 years, the University of Cincinnati gave me the opportunity to grow as a teacher, researcher and administrator.  Being back at this great institution, and having the privilege to partner with you to elevate it to even greater heights, is a dream come true.

As I begin my first day, my commitment to you is simple: to be guided by the wisdom of this diverse, dynamic and highly accomplished community.  My first priority, then, is to listen and learn.  I want to engage with as many of you as possible.  It will be your ideas and aspirations that will frame our vision and fuel our priorities.

UC’s impact as a student-centered, faculty-driven, urban-serving research university has never been more needed or more important.  All of us have a vital part to play in advancing our leadership role — in teaching, research, clinical care, diversity and inclusion, innovation, athletics and community engagement.  With our collective will and common direction clearly established, I passionately believe there is little that can stop us from fulfilling our destiny of being counted among the world’s very best comprehensive research universities.

As you know, American higher education is being tested by the very public it serves. Are we moving the needle enough on access and affordability? Are our graduates really ready for the workforce? Why does federal research funding matter? Is our commitment to diversity and inclusion more rhetoric than reality? Are we doing enough to improve quality healthcare in low-income communities? Is our financial model sustainable? Are we living up to the higher ideals inscribed in our mottos and mission statements?

Our big challenge and, frankly, our still bigger opportunity is to seek out ways to show the world why higher education’s impact and value matter more now than ever. Together, we must lean in and lead this conversation, demonstrating how well our faculty, students, staff and alumni are shaping the future as well as solving society’s most complex problems. Our story is ready to be told. We simply need to own it.

Please know that your messages of congratulations and support — including some from past students and their children now attending UC — have meant so much.  And your warm welcome of my wife Jennifer, a UC alumna, and our three children has been remarkably kind and gracious.  Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

Arriving back on campus on the eve of UC’s bicentennial in 2019 has made this homecoming even more special.  I pledge, with your help, to move the University of Cincinnati forward to its next and best century ever.

Go Bearcats,


Beverly J. Davenport, Interim President


Neville G. Pinto