Chancellor Message to Campus
Message from the Chancellor on Obama Presidential Library
I am pleased to announce our candidacy and most fervent hope that the University of Illinois at Chicago will be selected as the site of the Obama Presidential Library and Museum.
As Chicago’s only public research university and one of the most diverse campuses in the nation, UIC is the ideal institution to host the Obama Presidential Library and Museum. Our candidacy follows the recommendation of a task force of deans, administrators and outside advisors who agreed that UIC’s diversity, research, outreach and central location make it uniquely appropriate for the library and museum honoring President Obama’s legacy.
UIC ranks among the nation’s leading research institutions. It is Chicago’s largest university and home of the state’s major public medical center. Our annual research expenditures of $380 million have led to advances in health care, education and technology that benefit the world, yet we remain grounded in our dedication to educate the broadest range of learners. We are in and of Chicago.
Among our 27,500 students there is no ethnic majority, and 60 percent of our students come from homes in which one of more than 50 foreign languages is spoken. Many students are the first in their families to attend college. Nearly half of all UIC students are eligible for Pell grants, a program the president fought to save and strengthen. A quarter of all UIC students are Latino, and they cheered the president’s leadership and organized in support of the DREAM Act. UIC is also an Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institution.
The focus of our research and public service echoes President Obama’s signature achievements. Consider:
Looking ahead, UIC’s distinguished faculty in history, political science and public administration will collaborate productively with Obama Presidential Library scholars and visitors. The university’s Richard J. Daley Library, noted for its political archives, holds the personal papers of three Chicago mayors and dozens of the state’s public officials, jurists, journalists and reformers. UIC is also home to the Hull House Museum, which carries on the work of social activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Jane Addams.
I look forward to receiving further information on the president’s plans for the selection process. Our candidacy will be advanced by a team that includes a library/museum group, an architecture/site group, an academic programming group and a proposal group; all under the coordination of a steering committee. Each group includes student, faculty, administration, alumni and community-stakeholder representatives.
Tremendous pride and enthusiasm for our university, our community and our uniquely American and global city have sparked our desire to be considered for the honor of serving as the site for the Obama Presidential Library. I call on all of UIC’s friends, partners, and collaborators to join us in our bid for selection.
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