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September 23, 2013

Daniels advances Purdue on national stage

Mitch Daniels

President Mitch Daniels speaks during a panel discussion held by the Business Roundtable, a membership organization of CEOs from America's top 100 corporations as defined by revenues. Daniels was joined on the panel by (from left) John Engler, president of the Business Roundtable; Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida; Arne Duncan, U.S. secretary of education; and Rex Tillerson, chairman, president, and CEO of Exxon Mobil Corp. (Photo provided)
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Policymakers, education thought leaders, Fortune 100 CEOs and media learned more about Purdue as President Mitch Daniels promoted the University during a busy week of public appearances in Washington, D.C., and New York City.

Daniels shared details of Purdue initiatives to address challenges in higher education, the importance of federal investment in basic science research, filling the national shortage of STEM-prepared students and strategies for moving new technologies from the bench to the marketplace.

"We have a unique opportunity here to bring issues in higher education to the forefront, particularly to emphasize the message that basic scientific research is essential to our national economic success,” Daniels said. “Trips such as this one provide outstanding chances to raise Purdue's visibility in front of important national audiences and demonstrate Purdue’s leadership in creating solutions."

During the past week, Daniels met with Indiana's congressional delegation, including Sen. Dan Coats, Sen. Joe Donnelly and seven of Indiana’s nine House members, to encourage support of the University's research agenda and securing significant federal grants.

He continued to stress the crucial role of funding for research in interviews with MSNBC's "Morning Joe" and on Bloomberg TV's "Capitol Gains." Daniels said protecting and even increasing the federal resources to support basic science research -- critical to economic development -- would take serious discussions on entitlement program reform and the constraints produced by growing national debt.

"As my colleagues in higher education have said before I got here, sooner or later the federal government has to get serious about the fundamentals, which are entitlement programs that are squeezing the life out of research dollars, the NSF and the NIH as well as so many important discretionary activities. … And we've got to get to a pro-growth economic policy that generates more public revenue," Daniels said on "Capitol Gains."

At a summit on higher education at the National Press Club, Daniels highlighted how Purdue initiatives in engineering, technology and computer science are building upon the University's already strong commitment to teaching tomorrow's STEM leaders. Expanding the College of Engineering, for example, would meet part of the national call to graduate 10,000 more engineers per year, enhancing the state and national capacity for innovation, economic growth, and solutions to global grand challenges.

Daniels also was part of an illustrious panel at the Time Higher Education Summit, moderated by Time magazine's Fareed Zakaria, that featured Condoleezza Rice, former U.S. secretary of state and professor at Stanford University; Norm Augustine, retired chairman and CEO of Lockheed Martin; and John Holdren, presidential science and technology adviser.

American universities, currently leaders among the world’s higher ed institutions, must show a high return on investment to stay out front, Daniels said. “What value are we going to add, and how are we going to prove we’re adding value?”

Video and articles about Daniels' Sept. 16-20 trip

* Interview with Politico Pro, a new online publication widely read by education policymakers.

* Panel discussion at the Higher Education Innovation Summit at the National Press Club with James Kvaal, deputy director for domestic policy at the White House; Jeff Wilcox, cor­po­rate vice pres­i­dent for engi­neering at Lock­heed Martin Corp. (a major Purdue research partner); and Deb­orah Wince-​​​​Smith, pres­i­dent and CEO of the Council on Competitiveness (Purdue is a member organization). Sponsored by the Council on Competiveness and Northeastern University with an audience that included media as well as more than 100 policymakers and education thought leaders.

* Appearance on MSNBC's "Morning Joe"

* Appearance on Bloomberg TV's "Capitol Gains." Bloomberg TV reaches 310 million households around the world. In addition, Daniels was hosted by prominent commentator Al Hunt and managing editor Mike Tackett to speak with a group of Bloomberg News reporters and editors. Bloomberg View's The Ticker blog covered the wide-ranging discussion and distributed via their online news service reaching millions here.

* Panel discussion at the Time Summit on Higher Education. Co-sponsored by Time magazine, the Carnegie Corporation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Daniels' co-panelists were Condoleezza Rice, former U.S. secretary of state and professor at Stanford University; Norm Augustine, retired chairman and CEO of Lockheed Martin; John Holdren, presidential science and technology adviser, with Time's Fareed Sakaria as moderator.

Upcoming appearances

* On Tuesday (Sept. 24), Daniels will return to Washington, D.C., to keynote the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Business Horizon Retreat, focusing on entitlement and tax reform, pro-growth strategies and the need for government investment in fundamental scientific research. The retreat audience will include more than 100 policymakers and chamber members, including the Chamber of Commerce Committee of 100, which is composed of the top 100 chamber leaders from around the nation.

* On Oct. 8, Daniels will travel to New York to address the NBC Education Nation Summit. The summit will explore “What It Takes” to get a student through school and ready to succeed in college, career and beyond. Daniels will be joined by other leaders in education, politics, business, and entertainment, including Arne Duncan, U.S. secretary of education; New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg; Marian Wright Edelman, founder and president of the Children's Defense Fund; and David Coleman, president and chief executive officer of The College Board. The summit will be live streamed at EducationNation.com.

* Also in October, Daniels will be at the Council on Competitiveness National Competitiveness Forum as part of a panel discussing the future of higher education.

* That same month, he will give a distinguished lecture at the 2013 National Academy of Engineering Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. He will discuss the commitment of the University and state of Indiana to expanding the scope of engineering at Purdue.

* Also in October, Daniels will attend meetings and public sessions related to his position as co-chair of the National Research Council's Committee on Human Spaceflight. The committee was formed to "undertake a study to review the long-term goals, core capabilities and direction of the U.S. spaceflight program and make recommendations to enable a sustainable U.S. spaceflight program." During the same trip to Washington, D.C., Daniels will host an alumni event expected to draw more than 300 Purdue graduates, many of whom work within government.

* In November, Daniels will present the opening address to the annual meeting of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, a gathering of presidents and top leaders from most of the nation's pre-eminent universities and Purdue's peer institutions.