Mary Sue Coleman: The first eight months
It's unlikely anyone would say a university president's job is easy, but, undoubtedly, Mary Sue Coleman has experienced more major and often-difficult
issues in her brief tenure than many higher education leaders would deal with in an entire career. The affirmative action lawsuits, the NCAA basketball
investigation, a state budget crisis that impacts university funding, war and the threat of terrorism have made for a full presidential plate.
| Touring the campus, including the Life Sciences
Institute building due to open in fall 2003, was a part of Coleman’s
introduction to U-M. (Photo by Martin Vloet, U-M Photo Services)
"It's a hard job and we have difficult issues to face," Coleman
said on the day of her inauguration, March 27. "There are a lot of
puzzles that need to be solved, but I have great people to help me do
Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs and University Senate Chair Charles Koopmann Jr. agreed that Coleman's hands have been full.
"She has had the disadvantage of coming in from the outside and being handed the budget crisis, the affirmative action lawsuits and the basketball
situation," Koopmann said. "She has had to do a lot of cleaning up before she could begin to develop her own agenda."
Coleman seems undaunted by the challenges. "I cannot tell you how proud I am to be here," she said following the inauguration ceremony. "It's a joy to come
to work every day."
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