Murray State’s President-Elect Bob Davies says fostering a relationship between the university and community will become a top priority when he takes office this summer.
He also says he hopes to cooperate with community colleges in an effort to draw in students, furthering development in the area.
“The more that we’re able to do that, the more that we’re able to develop those partnerships, (it) strengthens the university, strengthens the region, and provides opportunities for our students to be engaged in many, many different ways,” Davies said.
Davies says he was pleased to see current president Tim Miller address questions and rumors will full transparency in an MSU Staff Congress meeting last week.
“I very much do the same type of thing,” Davies said.
Davies says MSU must serve as more than just an institution of learning in order to bolster bonds with the region.
“I think any public regional university has a role to support the region on many fronts: economically, culturally, educationally, and meeting statewide goals and ambitions beyond just that of the higher education role,” Davies said.
“I think it’s imperative that Murray State isn’t viewed as coming in and saying, ‘Here’s the challenges and we’re here to fix them!’ It’s really working with the community leaders to identify those challenges and then working with them and then coming up with creative solutions and whatnot.”
Davies will see his fair share of challenges as president; the year has not been kind to education in the region, bringing statewide budget cuts and the closure of Mid-Continent University in Mayfield.
The last day of Davies’ tenure at EOU is June 14th. Davies says he plans to take a vacation with his family before starting at MSU exactly one month later.
“We’re doing that because we know when we come here to Murray, that it’s going to be all Murray, all Murray State, all the time,” Davies said.