OU puts OSU to shame

*note: see article link on this site under news/articles, “OU aims to increase endowment to o$1 billion.”

I read the article in the Tulsa World regarding Dr. Boren’s meeting with the OU board of regents. Dr. Boren told them he wanted an increase in OU endowment to $1 billion within 3 yrs. It became obvious that OU was, without saying it, showing a significant difference between OSU and OU in their leadership, area of emphasis and even their donors.

The article pointed out, without actually stating it, the difference in the arena of priorities between OU and OSU (academics rather than athletics…and yes, we’re all aware of their excellence in athletics as well).

It was stated that only 14 public universities in the nation have such a large endowment. Dr. Boren wants OU to raise money for 20 more endowed faculty positions by the end of 2006, and a $50 million student scholarship campaign. Since ’94, endowed faculty positions has risen to 403 from 101. Seven more to be announced in the coming days. This, Boren said, indicates the faculty’s excellence and helps OU attract and retain top scholars from around the world.

The Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education matches private money donated for endowed faculty positions and the Oklahoma Supreme Court has approved a bond issue that pays the backlog of some of the matching money.

When some tried and true OSU alums are singing, “proud and IMMORAL”, rather than “proud and Immortal” and saying OSU stands for “Our Shamed University”, it is a sad day. Leadership! Where are you?

As Trude Naff pointed out a couple months ago, the OSU Foundation’s “Gift Acceptance Policy” states, among other things:

Gifts that may expose the Foundation or University to adverse publicity, require expenditures beyond their resources, or involve them in unexpected responsibilities because of their source, conditions or purposes will be referred to the President and CEO of the OSU Foundation. This individual may withhold approval of acceptance, pending a review. Where is our leadership?

Apparently there is a large telephone campaign to raise funding for our continued debt on the stadium. Could $165 million be used to ease this situation? Could our leadership direct reasonable options for contributions? Even the last $3 million donated as academic, is to go to helping the athletes graduate. Where is our leadership?

I know, “Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth”, be grateful for the gift, etc., but I have always thought of a “gift” as something given with no strings attached. I think of a “gift” with strings attached more akin to a “bribe.” Where is our leadership?

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3 Responses to OU puts OSU to shame

  1. Chris says:

    YOU THINK OUR OSU LEADERS DON’T HAVE PLANS TO INCREASE OUR FOUNDATION ENDOWMENTS for ACADEMICS?! You’ve got to be kidding me. It’s all part of the same plan. I guarantee you the plans are for the University to increase the financial endowments of academics to proportions matching or even beating OU’s and many other public universities around the nation. Our leaders just do a horrible job of communicating their goals and really need to invest in a new public relations director.

  2. Marion Agnew says:

    OSU’s leaders certainly do a fine job of PR when it comes to communicating athletics goals. If their PR is lacking for academic goals, what does that tell you about the relative priority of athletics and academics?

    And anyway, it’s inaccurate to blame this situation on faulty PR. Dressing up a bad idea in pretty clothing doesn’t make it a good idea. No athletics village is worth displacing property owners and seriously damaging OSU’s relationships with the very people OSU will be tapping for that increased academic endowment.

    OSU’s actions are speaking louder than any words can. OSU is abusing power to pursue a project that has a questionable possibility of success. If the OSU administration were sincerely committed to its academic future, its actions would be different.

    There’s no PR spin for that.

  3. Trude Coonrad Naff says:

    Chris–

    Your source of information is?????????????????????????? And the PLAN to increase financial endowments of academics to “proportions matching or even beating OU’s…” would be WHAT?????????????????????????

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