In an address that highlighted personal connections to Creighton (he is the first alumnus to serve as president, he was ordained at Creighton, and he has numerous family ties to the University), Timothy R. Lannon, S.J., was inaugurated 24th president of Creighton University. In his Sept.30 speech he stressed the transforming power of the “Spirit of Creighton.” He told those gathered that this spirit inspires life-changing student education, compassionate patient care, collaboration with key stakeholders, and resiliency in challenging times.
Although Creighton has its highest enrollment ever at 7,730; has received numerous national rankings; has leveraged its distinctiveness with many new cross-disciplinary degrees and programs among its nine colleges and schools; and has created centers of excellence that offer creative solutions to societal problems and issues, Fr. Lannon said the University must not rest.
“We are a great University but the Spirit of Creighton calls us to become an even greater university,” he said.
He offered the following manifestations of the Creighton spirit as insight for the road ahead.
Generosity and Inclusion: Fr. Lannon said access to a Creighton education must continue to be available to all talented students—and the University must raise the funds to help provide financial assistance for deserving students.
Healing: The changing face of health care confronts everyone, but he expressed confidence in Creighton health sciences leadership, physicians, health care workers and students to work diligently to find solutions to difficult issues.
Resilience: He affirmed that the University will move forward despite today’s challenges in higher education because, like all those who have gone before, the people that make up Creighton University are resourceful and committed to its mission.
Collaboration: He acknowledged that the University has fostered collaboration with the community, the Archdiocese of Omaha and more, but stressed that Creighton must take a greater role in correcting inequities in the Omaha area, especially through educational efforts.
Reminding the audience that discovery and new knowledge are the heart of the University’s educational mission, he announced the formation of a new President’s Faculty Research Fund, which will supply funds to faculty members to enhance research, teaching and learning.
Fr. Lannon said that now that the campus infrastructure has been transformed by the largest expansion and renovation in its history over the past decade, it is time to invest even more in the University’s academic programs.
“There is no university in the country like us. Let us dedicate ourselves to making Creighton known as the place where the East and West Coasts meet,” Fr. Lannon said, “where students from around the world come together in mutual understanding, to learn, to grow and to reach their God-given potential.”
For more information on the inauguration and to read his address click on www.creighton.edu/administration/presidentialinauguration/index.php.