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Last modified: Tuesday, September 27, 2005

President Adam Herbert delivers annual State of the University address

Pledges "ever-greater levels of academic distinction"

Sept. 27, 2005

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University President Adam Herbert declared Tuesday (Sept. 27) that his overarching goal for IU is to "reach ever-greater levels of academic distinction."

Adam Herbert

IU President Adam W. Herbert

Print-Quality Photo

In his annual "State of the University" speech, Herbert laid out his roadmap for moving IU forward in an era when higher education is facing reduced funding at both the state and federal levels, as well as increased competition from around the world for top faculty and students from academic institutions.

"Now more than ever before, public research universities such as ours must compete for the most talented faculty and graduate students in a truly international arena," Herbert said to an audience assembled in the Frangipani Room of IU's Indiana Memorial Union. The address also was Webcast live to audiences at all eight IU campuses.

A major element of Herbert's plan involves an expansion of research and scholarship in the life sciences. This includes development of a strategic plan for the life sciences, increasing cooperation between the College of Arts and Sciences in Bloomington and the IU School of Medicine in Indianapolis, construction of a new cancer hospital and additional buildings for research laboratories, and streamlining the process of moving laboratory discoveries into the commercial marketplace.

Herbert also pledged to develop a university-wide strategy to enhance the university's ability to recruit and retain top faculty. Herbert noted that IU's average faculty salary ranks ninth among Big Ten public universities.

"I will propose the creation of a new faculty rank beyond full professor," Herbert said. "This new rank would be included in the normal, peer-reviewed tenure and promotion process."

Other elements of Herbert's plan include:

  • Increased cooperation with community colleges which play a key role in remedial education and preparing students for pursuing four-year degrees.
  • Creation of an Office of University Planning, Institutional Research and Accountability to assist in policy development and performance accountability.
  • Remaining true to the university's core of liberal arts programs by identifying and providing funding for research and creative arts.
  • Initiating a leadership development program to identify and mentor the next generation of faculty leaders.
  • Appointment of an "Advancing Indiana" leadership team to serve as the university's central point of contact for economic development initiatives.

A full transcript of Herbert's speech may be found at