Back Cover Blurbs

President Jeff Lehman brings his usual scholarship, passion, clarity of thought and expression, humor, and authenticity in his speeches on the university of the twenty-first century and what it should mean to students, faculty, administrators, and the public-at-large.  It is a ‘must-read‘ for every partner of a world-class university throughout the world.  

  — Narayana N.R. Murthy, chairman of Infosys Technologies Limited and trustee of Cornell University

This is a remarkable collection of speeches and essays delivered by Cornell President Jeff Lehman.  His love of Cornell, of academia, and of learning through the teaching of the humanities is abundantly clear in these 15 transcripts.  Having heard many of these speeches as they were delivered, it is a great privilege to now be able to read and study them in greater depth.  There is much to be learned from listening to and reading his words.

  -- Andrew H. Tisch, co-chairman of Loews Corporation and trustee of Cornell University

Jeffrey Lehman’s thoughtful reflections on the role and responsibilities of the university present a provocative challenge that will be of interest and benefit not only to those in the academic community but also to all concerned with the great issues of our time.

  — Frank H.T. Rhodes, president emeritus of Cornell University

Compelling public speaking demands the ability to match speeches to audiences. Jeffrey Lehman is among the most refreshingly self-reflective of speakers.  One may or may not agree with all of his precepts—but one must admire Lehman’s ability to reflect on the relationship between principles of composition for public speech and the job of a university president.  The final chapter will lead readers to ask: “If not these precepts for composing public presentations, what would mine be?

  — Mary Sue Coleman, president of the University of Michigan

Jeff Lehman has woven together a set of remarkable speeches into a passionate and eloquent book about higher education and the extraordinary potential of our research universities.  He cogently analyzes several of the critical problems that universities can contribute to solving, and how they can best fulfill their responsibilities to students, faculty, our nation, and the world.  Anyone who is part of a university community will benefit from the wisdom in these pages.  And the sheer craftsmanship of the speeches, coupled with a thoughtful chapter reflecting on that craft, make this a worthwhile and pleasurable read for anyone in public life.

  — David Leebron, president of Rice University

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