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A Message from the President - July 1, 2011

To the Purdue community,

I have just celebrated four years as the president of this most extraordinary research institution. Today (July 1) I am announcing my decision to transition out of my role as president of Purdue University during July of 2012.

2011 PALS camp

Córdova during spring commencement

It is with great satisfaction that I look back over what we have accomplished. We have implemented a strategic plan focused on increasing student success, dramatically strengthened our research profile and enhanced Purdue's position nationally and globally. Our reputational rankings have soared. We have experienced a terrific increase in US News & World Report rankings and awe-inspiring awards to faculty, including the 2010 Nobel Prize in Chemistry, the National Medal of Technology, and two World Food prizes. We have established a Global Policy Research Institute to address global challenges by connecting science and engineering at Purdue with social science research. And we have launched our new College of Health and Human Sciences.

I have been fortunate to be part of Purdue's prominence on the world stage -- the Nobel ceremony in Stockholm, the National Medal of Technology ceremony at the White House, Purdue Day at China Agricultural University, and two World Food Prize celebrations in Iowa. At home, I've enjoyed numerous Big Ten athletics victories, "Shouting" with students in the third quarter at Ross-Ade Stadium, and trading compliments with our "Compliment Guys."

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I am especially proud that all of our undertakings have been with an emphasis on student achievement and creating an exceptional learning environment.

When I became Purdue's president, I was devoted to being a change agent -- a commitment from which I have never wavered. I am proud to have accelerated the pace of progress we achieved in our strategic plan through the engagement of a talented workforce and a staff that has achieved many new synergies.

We have much more to accomplish. I pledge that in my final year I will remain focused with robust plans to continue moving us not only forward, but upward, to compete in a world that is teeming with challenges.

I have committed to the Board of Trustees that over the next year I will see the University through a unique process for Purdue, one that has great potential for its future, called the Decadal Funding Plan. Its focus is to identify and grow new forms of revenue over the next decade, to keep college affordable for students and still provide a high-quality educational experience. It is a new way of thinking about long-term growth, capacity and opportunities for stretch initiatives. When completed, this plan will reflect the amazing creativity that resides in our faculty, staff and students.

I also look forward to working with the University Senate to implement a robust honors college and a core curriculum, and continue the development of our student success corridor and the new life and health sciences quadrangle. In the next year alone, we will dedicate or break ground on 14 new facilities for student success and research.

What distinguishes this university may very well be what draws us all to the pursuit of new goals and seemingly impossible dreams -- the honest and fearless perseverance to reach that next big goal. I am dedicated to public higher education at this great research institution and increasing our impact locally, nationally and globally.

I will continue the passion, energy and optimism evident in my tenure at Purdue, and I look forward to working with you to contribute to Purdue's growth and success!



France A. Córdova