President Mitch Daniels…of Purdue University
The rumors started earlier this week with unnamed sources from both sides saying that Mitch Daniels would be the next president of Purdue. Yesterday the board of trustees made it official. They unanimously voted to make Governor Daniels the 12th president of Purdue University. Governor Daniels will finish his term as Governor of Indiana and will start his tenure at Purdue in January 2013. We believe this will be a great move for our states land grant school.
Mitch Daniels took over as Governor of Indiana in January 2005 and inherited a state that was faced with many problems. Instead of casting blame, he addressed the challenges he faced with bold initiatives. In short order his efforts lead to a balanced state budget, cut the size of government, and got our state on track. He did all of this without raising taxes. His effectiveness with the budget has Indiana now discussing automatic taxpayer refunds. His success was noticed across the country and caused many to want him to run for President. While he turned down a run at the Oval Office, he will still have the title of president. He has been successful as our Governor and we believe that success will continue at our alma mater Purdue University.
Purdue has faced challenges, as have many, with the economy. There are budgetary woes that need to be addressed and Governor Daniels has proven he is qualified to deal with those issues. Will Purdue see cuts under president Daniels? We believe it to be very likely. Will the cuts diminish the quality of education one receives at Purdue? We don’t believe that to be the case. We believe a president Daniels would shake things up at Purdue by rejecting the status quo and taking a new approach to problem solving in academia. Daniels has acknowledged that leading a university requires a different approach than leading a state. Based on his track record, we believe he is up to the challenge.
One area to note is that higher education is often associated with liberal ideology. There are numerous state schools across the country that have a very liberal culture attached to them. It has been our experience that Purdue is not like this. While there are certainly very liberal sects on campus, the overall culture tends to lean toward traditional Midwestern values. As president of Purdue, we see a president Daniels being a thought leader on conservative ideology with an emphasis on economic issues. His influence would drown out liberal economic ideas and focus more on the ideas that he helped advance as President Reagan’s political director in the mid 80′s. Ideas of supply side economics that put a nation back to work and lowered interest rates. Sadly, these ideas have been lost on the present generation, and have been filled with promises of hope and change. As our young people realize our current policies aren’t working, the students of Purdue will realize why with Daniels leading the discussion.
We are glad to see Mitch Daniels become the next president of Purdue. While he doesn’t have a background in academia, he does have a track record of success in both business and government. We believe that success will continue at Purdue. While he shied away from discussing athletics, we really hope he can do something about the football team
(This was a joint post between Josh Gillespie and Matt Brinkman. Both are Purdue graduates and want to remind everyone to Boiler Up!)
(Images come from the Indy Star. You can find their gallery of pictures taken during and after the naming here.)