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WSU presidents

Winter 2002

A compass, not a roadmap

“Guided by a plan that hundreds of WSU people worked on for more than a year, we have maintained stability in one of the toughest years in our history.” —V. Lane Rawlins

Recently, I spent a day in Kongsberg, Norway, at a company that is the world leader in development and production of dynamic stabilizers. These technological wonders are installed on ships and oil platforms in the stormy North Sea to stabilize them so that the oil fields can be worked. I was amazed at a video showing ships sitting still in a rough sea, accomplished, I was told, by precisely measuring all … » More …

Fall 2009

WSU Presidents—An evening of honors

In late June nearly 200 people gathered to recognize Washington State University’s presidents emeriti Glenn Terrell (1967–1985), Sam Smith (1985–2000), and V. Lane Rawlins (2000–2007). The event kicked off a fundraising effort for need-based scholarships for students who might have to drop out of school because of tuition hikes and the poor economy.

Welcoming the crowd to the Fairmont Olympic Hotel, WSU President Elson S. Floyd said he seized the opportunity to get all the presidents together, “so that we could say hello, share stories, and have some photos taken together.”

“These were dedicated men,” said Rawlins of his fellow presidents. “During their tenure and … » More …

Summer 2006

Can America compete in a 'Flat' World?

Many of you are familiar with Thomas Friedman’s argument, in The World is Flat, that technology has eliminated many barriers to competition and thus created today’s globally competitive economic environment. His dramatic examples of outsourcing show that key services, including high-level engineering and scientific tasks, can be effectively accomplished without regard to the workers’ physical location. This allows imaginative businesses to tap talent from around the globe, often at considerable savings.

Friedman, a foreign affairs columnist for The New York Times, uses this evidence to reach some alarming conclusions about how America will fare in the future. After establishing the central thesis that location is … » More …