Editorial: A charge to incoming President Leath

Editorial Board

Welcome and congratulations, Dr. Steven Leath, on being named the new president of Iowa State University. As the 15 president, you continue a long legacy, one which the faculty and student body esteem and have high expectations for. Many presidents came before you, building the reputation of Iowa State was well as its academic, research and extracurricular esteem. It’s a lot to live up to; however, we’re reassured that you’ll have the resources to handle it.

Iowa State has a legacy for its role in research, but this is nothing new to you. Your service as vice president for research at the University of North Carolina, position as director of North Carolina’s Agricultural Research Service, and your experiencing North Carolina’s Research Campus should come in quite handy at our university.

Every successful research program is built from academics, but you will excel here as well. As the former interim vice president for Academic Planning and associate dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, we hope you’ll continue your academic excellence at Iowa State.

From our vast colleges of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Design, Agriculture and Life Sciences, and Engineering, there are many different disciplines and voices contending for a say. We are a community with vast differences. But we also come together through Iowa State; here football and the Big 12 matter, students of Iowa State develop amongst a deep rivalry and weekly football game. Here we have a culture and a people of our own, one which any outsider will have to adapt to quickly, but we have confidence in you.

As the new president, you’ll also have a whole new plate of issues a dean, researcher and professor never had. Issues such as government funding cuts and record enrollments will force you to act quickly and maneuver through the imponderabilia of Iowa State. The issues that academics and researchers deal with rarely suddenly become a pertinent issue in the presidency.

Finally there are the students. Like you, many students come from different parts of our country. We represent every background, we come with every dream, and we have every imaginable expectation for our university. Among all the responsibility of research and administration, we pulsate like blood keeping Iowa State alive and fresh. It’s easy to focus on the politics and the research, but don’t forget the students.

We’re grateful to have you as our president. We expect great things from a man who’s served other universities as well as you have. Each year, with new students and faculty, this university changes, and as we move together though troubles and triumphs, we keep faith in your leadership. On behalf of the student body, welcome to Iowa State University.