Presidential Candidate Outlines Vision For NDSU

NDSU presidential candidate William N. Ruud described a broad vision for the institution during an open forum May 4. Ruud, the third of four candidates to visit campus, is president of Shippensburg University in Shippensburg, Pa.

"My vision is that North Dakota State University is a metropolitan land-grant university of distinction," Ruud told an audience of about 215 faculty, staff, students and members of the NDSU Presidential Search Committee. "That will set us apart, and creates a new role and an environment that is both metropolitan and rural. That kind of mind set will move us forward rapidly in the 21st century."

Ruud called NDSU "an economic driver that is critical to the future of North Dakota." He called for a continued NDSU focus on research and a "student-friendly" campus environment. He said agriculture and the land-grant mission are critical to NDSU’s success. Ruud said he envisions continued advancement for the Research and Technology Park, NDSU’s athletic programs and the university’s efforts to increase diversity.

"We have to be an engaged institution. We have to redesign teaching and learning, redefine research and discovery and redefine service and engagement. We’ve got to be a two-way street partner with the folks in the community," Ruud said, suggesting NDSU can move to the Carnegie Foundation’s "very high" research activity classification.

"Over the next three-to-five years, the way a lot of states are struggling, we have a unique opportunity to leapfrog in front of the other 49 states. North Dakota and North Dakota State University will be known, not only throughout the Midwest, the United State and North America, but throughout the world as the place to go for higher education," Ruud said.

Ruud earned his bachelor’s degree at the University of North Dakota, and his MBA and doctorate in organizational behavior and psychology at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln.

He joined Shippensburg University in January 2007. He previously was vice president for development and university relations at California State University, Stanislaus. He was the chief education policy adviser for the governor of Idaho, vice president for institutional advancement and dean of business and economics at Boise State University and interim dean of business administration at the University of Toledo. An Army veteran, he also taught at Central Michigan University, U. S. Army Research Institute, Northwestern Louisiana State University and University of Nebraska, Lincoln.

?The open forum for ?John Gardner, vice president for economic development and global engagement at Washington State University, is set for Friday, May 7, at 10:30 a.m. in Festival Concert Hall. Dean L. Bresciani, former vice president for student affairs at Texas A&M University, and Gary L. Miller, provost and vice president for academic affairs and research at Wichita State University, visited campus during the week of April 26-30 for interviews, meetings and open forums.

The NDSU Presidential Search Committee is scheduled to meet May 13 to select finalists to forward to the State Board of Higher Education. The committee has been charged with providing the board at least three unranked candidates for consideration. Board members are scheduled to interview finalists on May 24.