New University of Oregon President Michael Gottfredson met with the public to talk about his first full week on the job.
“One thing I have to say is it is a great day to be a Duck with the success of all the Olympics,” Gottfredson said.
He took office Aug. 1 and has since been familiarizing himself with campus, the students and the Eugene community.
“It’s been wonderful. (I’ve) been busy getting to know the campus,” he said. “I feel very welcomed to be here.”
Last week, Gottfredson met with UO student leaders, as well as attending an IntroDUCKtion session to get to know some of the incoming freshmen and their parents. He attended the Oregon State Board of Higher Education meeting and also met the presidents of other public universities in Oregon.
In the process of familiarizing himself with the campus and faculty, he has been familiarizing himself with the current agenda and issues that UO is working on.
“I’m ahead of schedule, I’ve been told,” he said. “We have a full week ahead of us.”
In the coming year, Gottfredson plans on making sure that the UO is very accessible to everyone, and that the quality is kept at a high standard.
“It’s what we stand for as a public university,” he said. “We’ll be focusing on that continuously.”
Along with accessibility and quality, making sure that there are enough facilities and classrooms for students — as more come to the University — are among his priorities.
“We want to make sure that we have enough room,” he said.
Throughout the day, he will continue to tour campus and take a closer look at the buildings.
Gottfredson will also be focusing on the rising cost of tuition and making sure, as part of the accessibility for students, tuition is kept as low as possible.
“We are very concerned about the cost of tuition,” he said.
Summing up his first week, he said he continues to learn about UO but did not encounter any surprises.
“I’m on a big learning curve and that’s my business: learning,” Gottfredson said.