Harvard University named Lawrence Summers as their next president on Sunday. The nine-month search for a president began last May when current president Neil Rudenstine announced his decision to step down. Other candidates were University of Michigan President Lee Boullinger and Harvard Provost Harvey Fineberg.
Summers, 46, who received a bachelor’s degree from MIT and his Ph.D. in economics from Harvard, is a well-known economist who has received several awards for his work, including the John Bates Clark Medal, given every other year to the most outstanding American economist under the age of 40. Summers served as Secretary of the Treasury for the U.S. Government from July 2, 1999 until Jan. 20, 2001. His presidency at Harvard will begin July 1.
“He is a person of extraordinary academic distinction, with a deeply rooted understanding of the University and its purposes, as well as extensive leadership experience on the national and international stage,” said Chairman of the Presidential Search Committee Robert G. Stone in a Harvard press release.
“I am honored by the opportunity to return to Harvard at such an exciting time in the life of the University,” said Summers.
NYU President L. Jay Oliva and Columbia University President George Rupp announce decisions to step down
Presidents of two New York City universities, New York University and Columbia University, recently announced their decisions to step down.
L. Jay Oliva, the 14th president of NYU, was inaugurated in November of 1991, after serving 32 years as a faculty member. During Oliva’s term as president of NYU, applications for freshman admission tripled and the selectivity of the college decreased to 29 percent.
“Dr. Oliva has served New York University for 42 years, and during all that time has played a major role in making our university one of the great learning centers of the world,” said Martin Lipton, chair of the NYU’s Board of Trustees, in a NYU press release.
George Rupp, president of Columbia University since 1993, will end his presidency in the summer of 2002. During Rupp’s tenure, the University more than doubled the number of applications for Columbia’s undergraduate spots.”
Though Rupp said in a Columbia press release that he “will not rule out other options that might develop in the course of the coming year,” he would “welcome the opportunity to return to the teaching and writing I intended to pursue when I first became a faculty member.” Rupp emphasized that in the future, “I will not become the president of another university.”