Fireside Chat with Dr. Kristina Johnson and Molly Ranz Calhoun

This meeting occurred on December 8, 2020. Below you will find highlights of the virtual event.

Both Dr. Johnson and Molly introduced themselves and took a few minutes to tell us a little bit about their visions for the future.

Dr. Kristina M. Johnson is an American business executive, engineer, academic, and former government official who served as the 13th chancellor of the State University of New York from September 2017 until June 2020. In June 2020 The Ohio State University Board of Trustees named her as our university’s 16th president. She is busy getting to know the OSU students, faculty, administrators and her staff. Her vision for Ohio State includes increasing the individualized educational opportunities for the 65000 student body, reducing the student debt upon graduation, increasing the percentage of out of state students and students from other countries, improving the classroom instructors to student ratios and increasing the emphasis on research, especially research to help solve global challenges such and clean water and opioid addiction.

On these issues she notes that 20% of student degrees currently go to out of state and students from other countries.  Student from foreign countries affords all students the opportunity to learn about other cultures, languages, and customs and enriches the university experience for all. Approximately half of the current students graduate debt free but the other half graduate with an average debt of approximately $46000.  With the current experience of student virtual learning, she visualizes an increase in the hybrid version of in person and on line learning for our students in the future.  Dr. Johnson is a big supporter of athletics and was a two sport athlete at SUNY.

Ms. Ranz Calhounā€™s vision is to increase alumni engagement.  We have approximately 580,000 alumni of which only 21% are considered currently engaged.  She also wants to increase our diversity, education, and inclusion of alumni through a lifetime of learning.  To do that it will be necessary to introduce and encourage more virtual learning.  She will also emphasize the importance of paying forward, alumni/student mentoring programs, and Just In Time learning.  We currently have approximately 480,000 alumni, 153 clubs and $125,000,000 in endowment funds.

Both ladies are very enthusiastic about their opportunities here at Ohio State and are very personable.  They hope to have opportunities for further virtual and in person communications with our alumni in the future.  Our Alumni Club is very grateful to both of them for the opportunity to meet them and learn about their visions for our great university.

Gene Elleman