April 27, 2001

Good Morning:

This week started out in D.C. at the spring meeting of the Association of American Universities. This group is comprised of the Presidents and Chancellors of the 59 leading research universities in the U.S. and Canada. In celebration of the association's 100th anniversary, the Presidents of the top 50 universities from around the world joined us for a series of discussions about the future of higher education. It was a fascinating meeting highlighted by separate sessions with Secretary of State Colin Powell and His Highness the Aga Khan, spiritual leader of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims.

On Tuesday, I traveled to the "Big Apple" for meetings with alumni, parents and board members. New York, incidentally, has the largest concentration of Tulane alumni and parents outside of Louisiana.

On Thursday we had a fascinating joint meeting of the Board's Endowment and Technology Committees to discuss the university's emerging technology transfer strategy. This has been a topic of discussion in various university forums this year and the Board has taken a great deal of interest in the subject. For those of you wanting to know more about the topic, I have posted the speech I gave yesterday for the Health Sciences Center's Research Days Awards Ceremony on the history and importance of technology transfer, the commercial application of research, as part of a university's mission.

Under interim Provost Paul Barron and the Graduate Council, a team of outstanding external reviewers visited the campus a few months ago to discuss and review the history and current state of our Graduate School and its programs. This week the team provided us with a blueprint, including specific recommendations, for the future of the Graduate School. Its implementation will be a high priority for the new Provost beginning next fall and has my enthusiastic endorsement.

In between the above events, Margie and I got an opportunity to recognize and honor employees celebrating 25 years of service at Tulane. I also attended the last concert of the year by Green Envy, Tulane's wonderful a cappella group, and updated the Provost's Council on events at the university. If time permits, I would like to see our baseball team, currently ranked 9th in the nation, play this weekend. Kudos to our men's and women's tennis teams who won the Conference USA championships this week. Enjoy your weekend!


P.S. I've received quite a few inquiries regarding the pink flamingoes on the front lawn of Number 2 Audubon. These aren't permanent lawn decorations but are rather a clever promotion from the folks presenting the upcoming "Zoo-To-Do."

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