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Investiture Ceremonies Install Dr. Michael Drake As OSU President

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Ohio State
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Dr. Michael V. Drake was formally installed as president in ceremonies Tuesday

Nine months after beginning his leadership duties at Ohio State University, Dr. Michael V. Drake was formally installed as president in ceremonies Tuesday. In an address, Drake laid out his vision and priorities for OSU.

In his investiture speech, President Drake laid out a number of priorities. At the top of the list: making a college education more affordable.

“Students crossing the Oval with book bags filled with knowledge and promise should not be burdened with the weight of worry about how to pay for college,” Drake said.

Drake predicts the university could save $200 million by being more efficient. He says the academic medical center alone has already saved $50 million during his nine months as president. His goal is to achieve $400 million, some of which would be directed toward student aid.

“The first targeted use of these saving will be an immediate increase to the scholarship pool particularly for lower- and middle-income students by a minimum of $15 million in the 2015-16 academic year. We will sustain this level at a minimum each year thereafter for five years, but we’d like it to increase. Our overall goal will be to increase scholarship support by at least $100 million by 2020,” Drake said.

President Drake said Ohio State must be an inclusive university where diversity is a source of strength. He addressed social inequities that plague American society.

“It is deeply troubling to see recent examples of racial and other forms of discord and intolerance across our country, even on college campuses,” Drake said.

Drake called Ohio State a vibrant and diverse university but says a number of steps will be implemented to ensure greater inclusion.

“Our universities, of all places, must welcome and celebrate all individuals, regardless of race, class, culture, orientation or identity,” Drake said.

Drake noted the service Ohio State provides to the greater community. Only blocks away from campus, he said, many children might not know where they’re getting their next meal. It’s a problem, Drake says, that the university should help alleviate.

“Combined with more than 50 faculty who work on food security issues, we will, over the next decade, commit nearly $100 million to this grand challenge,” Drake said.

President Drake closed his remarks with the following:

“Our current aspiration is to widen the sphere of our impact, to be inclusive and expansive and excellent as we move toward a bright and more perfect horizon,” Drake said. “Together let us continue to shine the light of knowledge in all directions. Let us sing Ohio’s praise. And let us affirm thy friendship to The Ohio State University. Thank you very much.”

Dr. Michael V. Drake is the 15th president of Ohio State University.