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Conversations With the Provost

There is a functioning website on UThink entitled: '"Conversations with the Provost." It has been established in the spirit of engagement fostered by OurProvost Tom Sullivan. I encourage readers to check it out and post in the comments section your ideas and thoughts on our great university.

From Conversations with the Provost:


No, this is NOT actually the Provost's web site. The graphic above was originally on a short-lived UThink blog site that has been closed.

There may be more here in the future. Check back.

Bill Gleason

Added: September 9, 2008


September 9, 2008

Dear faculty, students, and staff,

Welcome to a new academic year. As Provost of this great research university, I hope to encourage the University community to engage in discussion on major topical issues. This message is the first in a series of several intended to spark those discussions.

Since our community has just finished hosting the Republican National Convention and a presidential election is just two months away, I have been thinking about the connection between democracy and higher education. I welcome your comments about these ideas. My email is provost@umn.edu.

One of the energizing aspects of working and studying at a major university is being surrounded by students and colleagues with whom creative, thoughtful, and articulate ideas can be shared, debated, and developed. Please join or spark discussions of your own!

Best regards,

Tom Sullivan

Tom, this is not my idea of engagement. You pontificate and we respond - via email. The message comes across as: "Children, discuss among yourselves." Conversations have to be two way. My response to the above as well as the linked extended article will be posted. I will let you know when this happens and invite you to respond. And of course any time you'd actually like to engage in a spirited debate that challenges your assumptions, just let me know. I'd be happy to take you to the BigTen or the Wok some Saturday for lunch.


Bill Gleason

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