Senate Source

June 2008


Dynes and BrownA President Says Farewell


As I wind down my presidency and look back over the record of the past 5 years, I am struck by two thoughts: I could not have achieved the successes I did without faculty involvement and faculty excellence. And I could not have shouldered the challenges I faced without faculty advice and faculty support.


I take particular pride in the “Power of 10” long-range vision, our strategic international alliances, and the “Cal Teach” K-12 science and math initiatives. All three began as ideas that seemed unconventional. All three met with skepticism. I spent a lot of time in discussions with faculty, and you helped me hone the ideas. In each case, faculty stepped up to the plate, and we made the improbable happen – which is a trademark of the University of California.


And on those occasions when I came under fire from many directions, as every president does, I drew strength from my interactions with faculty leaders and from seeing the passion that you bring to your jobs.


Shared governance is voluntary work. Your service on this Council and on your campuses is not required of you. But you do it anyway. You do it because you believe it makes UC a better university. And you do it extremely well.


Faculty are the watchdogs of UC quality. I saw that most clearly in our recruitment of eight stellar chancellors, made possible by the incredible work of the faculty screening committees. Our chancellors are products of your efforts.


So I leave you with thanks for a great run, and also with a request: Please do everything you can to support Mark Yudof, who I believe will be a superb president.


I will close with the words of a great son of California, the immortal Jerry Garcia: “What a long, strange trip it’s been.”


And I will add my own postscript: “A long, strange trip… and it ain’t over yet.”


-- Robert C. Dynes