Lehman Keeps Presidential Compensation After Stepping Down

November 13, 2007

It is mid-November, time for The Chronicle of Higher Education to release executive compensation numbers. The Cornell Daily Sun article sums up the relevant info nicely:

After stepping down as Cornell’s 11th president, Jeffrey S. Lehman ’77, who left office under controversial circumstances, was compensated $785,518 for the 2005-06 fiscal year — over $75,000 more than then-Interim President Hunter R. Rawlings III. … Lehman’s post-job compensation in 2005-06 was more than all the Ivy presidents, except Yale University President Richard Levin, who earned $869,026.

As you may remember, Lehman made over $1 million in 2004-05, the most in the Ivy League. Rawlings took over as the president on July 1, 2005.

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NY Times Profiles Cornell Residential Colleges

July 29, 2007

The New York Times published a piece today on the growing popularity of residential colleges around the country. It was given a clever title – The Residential Collage. Taking the center stage is none other than Cornell University’s own West Campus Residential Initiative.

It presented an interesting history of the project:

The West Campus Initiative at Cornell is emblematic of how residential life shapes a campus. It began under Hunter R. Rawlings III, the university’s president from 1995 to 2003. Mr. Rawlings arrived to find what he called “a divided campus.” The dorms then on West Campus, undistinguished buildings popularly known as U-halls, were located near many fraternity houses, and tended to attract white suburban students interested in a “pre-fraternity experience,” Mr. Rawlings says. Most minority students gravitated to the dorms on North Campus. Seeing an opportunity both to cross-pollinate the campus and to provide incoming students with greater supervision during their first year, Mr. Rawlings herded all the freshmen to North Campus. Then he embarked on the West Campus project, which he saw as a way of combating another tradition at Cornell — very hard work offset by very hard partying.

Missing from the article completely are Lehman and Skorton, but let’s not get distracted. It gets better:

“It had become clear that there was a 4:30 p.m. cutoff at the university, after which many students entered an intellect-free zone,” says Mr. Kramnick, who was named the first vice provost for undergraduate education in 2001. Cornell, he adds, prided itself on giving students independence in their choice of housing, “but for some students, better students who were looking for more intellectually oriented living arrangements, we didn’t have it.”

Also missing from the story are any real student opinions:

Indeed, interviews with a dozen students at Cornell would indicate that in loco amicus is thriving. They don’t think the West Campus houses have changed campus life – not yet – and most students see them not so much as a new learning philosophy as a snazzy new place to live.

Out of that dozen, only two make it into the article. Both were West Campus residents last semester.


Yale May Establish an Arts Program in Abu Dhabi

February 5, 2007

From today’s Yale Daily News:

A desert island teeming with mangroves and gazelles may seem like an unlikely site for a Yale arts program, but the government of Abu Dhabi, attempting to create the world’s next artistic and cultural haven, is betting that Yale will want to be a part of it. … The program would be the first of its kind in the Middle East for Yale.

Brings back the memories (from April 2001):

In an unprecedented expansion of the international presence of American higher education, Cornell University and a private foundation organized by the Emir of Qatar announced today (April 9, 2001) the establishment of the Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar. The new medical college will offer a complete medical education in Qatar leading to a Cornell University M.D. degree, based on the same admission standards and curriculum as the New York campus. … “This agreement is a first in Cornell’s 136-year history, and, in fact, a first for U.S. higher education,” said Hunter Rawlings, president of Cornell.

Just a little flashback.


Rawlings on NY Governor-Elect’s Transition Team

November 12, 2006

From Chronicle Online:

Former Cornell President Hunter Rawlings and Cornell Trustee Elizabeth D. Moore ’75 have been named to the transition team of New York State Governor-elect Eliot Spitzer.


State of the University 2006

June 13, 2006

Hunter Rawlings gave his farewell State of the University address June 10. Naturally, Chronicle Online covers the event. From “‘New Cornell’ is more popular and visible than ever, says Cornell President Rawlings” :

Receiving standing ovations both before and after he delivered his farewell State of the University address June 10, Cornell Interim President Hunter Rawlings told the packed Bartels Hall alumni group during Reunion Weekend that Cornell, a “new Cornell,” has just accepted “the most selective class in the history of Cornell University.”

This new Cornell, said Rawlings, who steps down June 30, is “so popular right now and so highly visible”– reaping 28,000 applications for a class of 3,000 students and grabbing national attention as a major contender to enroll Alex Doonesbury in the famed comic strip — for a multitude of reasons.

And what a fine benchmark Doonesbury is when measuring the success of an Ivy League university.


Iowa Growing Top University Leaders

May 23, 2006

The media is obsessed with David Skorton’s Facebook presence. From the January 23 Inside Higher Ed article “Cornell Turns to Iowa (Again) for a President” :

At Iowa [Skorton] has placed an emphasis on connecting with undergraduates — notably creating a profile for himself on Facebook, and using the popular Web site as a way to stay in touch with his hundreds of undergraduate Facebook friends.

And later on a little bit of trivia:

The University of Iowa may increasingly be seen as a market place for — among other things — university presidents. Skorton’s three immediate predecessors left for the top jobs at the University of Michigan (Mary Sue Coleman), Cornell (Hunter R. Rawlings III, who preceded Lehman and has been back in Cornell’s president’s office since Lehman left) and Dartmouth College (James O. Freedman). In 2003, Texas Tech University hired Jon Whitmore, then Iowa’s provost, as president.

That is something.