Joel Seligman's first twelve years of University Presidency were enormously productive. Working with a great leadership team, the University of Rochester student body increased by thirty-three percent; faculty by twenty-six percent; and student body, faculty, and staff diversity improved all while emphasizing quality growth. Progress was implemented through strategic planning and the largest capital campaign in University history. Nearly $1 billion in new facilities were added and the budget nearly tripled, while expanding a University health center that included six hospitals, a Cancer Center, a Children's Hospital, Clinical and Translational Research, Data Science, Neuromedicine, Digital Media, and Education. The campus also added new dorms, dining facilities, an Engineering quadrangle and substantial expansions of the School of Nursing, Eastman School of Music, Memorial Art Gallery, athletics facilities, libraries, and the addition of a new College Town.
This substantial progress was possible due to the investment of the Board, faculty, students, and alumni to support the Campaign for Rochester and the University's community leadership.
However, in the thirteenth year, the magic ended. This memoir analyzes why Universities succeed and why they are increasingly vulnerable.