UF President Kent Fuchs delivered his first Fall State of the University address Thursday.
As he stood at the front of the stage of the Reitz Union Auditorium, Fuchs spoke to administrators and faculty about increasing diversity on campus, growing UF’s research and scholarship funds and expanding UF’s reach across the globe.
"UF has incredible strength and momentum," he said.
He highlighted UF’s accomplishments in the past year, including receiving a record about $707 million in research funding, completing construction on six major facilities and hiring new faculty under the preeminence initiative, which recruits esteemed professors in their fields of study.
"I have indeed seen preeminence," he said.
Fuchs expressed concern over UF’s reach beyond Florida, citing that only 7 percent of undergraduates come from out of state and 1 percent of undergraduates are international students.
He said his goal-setting task force will create a report detailing its plans to make UF a top-tier university. The plan will be finalized in December.
UF Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Mike McKee said Fuchs was as sincere and honest during his address as he is in private meetings.
"What I think the people saw there was genuine Kent Fuchs," he said.
Fuchs said UF has an opportunity to contribute to society in greater ways and affect not just Florida’s future, but the entire world’s.
"I thank you for joining me in seizing that opportunity," he said.
UF President Kent Fuchs delivers his State of the University address in the Reitz Union Auditorium on Sept. 24, 2015. He plans to increase diversity and research opportunities at UF.