Academics & Research / Fall 2018

Q&A with DU’s new provost

New provost Jeremy Haefner comes to DU from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), where he served for 10 years as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. Haefner, who also worked at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs, talks about his first impressions of DU.

 

Q: What will be your priorities as provost?

A: One of my first tasks will be to immerse myself into the DU community, culture and traditions. I am eager to get started and build a practice of regularly meeting and communicating with all our stakeholders.

 

Q: What are the similarities or differences between RIT and DU?

A: There are considerable differences. DU’s mission to serve the public good was a huge attraction to me. Of course, DU is an urban university sitting inside the dynamic city of Denver. And DU has a wonderful split of graduate and undergraduate populations that afford many opportunities for intergenerational learning. But there are similarities too. Both institutions emphasize experiential learning. Both emphasize international education. And both wish to expand and grow their research and scholarly activity.

 

Q: What opportunities have you been able to identify at DU?

A: Denver is a fascinating place. It is a strong technology town that attracts creative young people. It is committed to sustainability and well-being. The hospital system is first-rate and doing cutting-edge research. Denver also is an aviation town with many opportunities in the aerospace industry. I wonder how our portfolio of academic programs aligns with these opportunities. I have already learned of a number of emerging collaborations across the colleges and schools that lead me to believe DU can be an international thought leader in a few select areas. Preventative and behavioral health and community-engaged scholarship are just two examples that have already impressed me. But I know there are many more.

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