tv NBC 6 Impact with Jackie Nespral NBC January 17, 2016 9:30am-10:00am EST
behind-the-scenes details on how miami got football coach mark richt to sign on the dotted line. this is "nbc 6 impact" and i'm your host, jackie nespral. [ ] dr. julio frenk is the new president of the university of miami. he joined the school after leading the harvard school of medicine and he is the former minister of health for mexico. in an extended interview, dr. frenk laid out his vision for the u, and his plans to make the university even better. you are the first hispanic president of this wonderful university that's going to near 90 years. let's talk about some of the programs that we have here at the university of miami for inclusiveness and for diversity. >> so the university of miami is already one of the most diverse universities in the country in
particular. it's also quite diverse when it comes to staff and faculty. i think we need to do much more with faculty, with more delivered recruitment. but if you look at our student body it is very diverse along multiple dimensions. of course, race and ethnicity is a major one and gender, sexual orientation, national origin... this is a very international university. we have students from more than 100 countries, from all 50 states in the united states. it's very, very diverse culturally, socioeconomically as well. so that's a great strength. what i've been saying is that we need to keep track of the metrics of diversity, make sure that we are not just on track but getting better every
beyond the numbers and we need create a culture of belonging, a feeling, a sense of every member of this community that this is their place on earth while they're students or staff members or faculty. because you can have good numbers and you can still have a large number of members in the community who feel this is not their place, who feel isolated or alienated from the community. so i'm proposing to take the issue of diversity and inclusion a step further and really work to build a place where everyone feels safe, everyone feels respected. you know, everyone should feel that they are valued and they add value to the university. >> you did somethingnghat was unique, which was a "listening tour," if you will. right. >> an immersion process. what did you learn? >> i learned a lot of things. i did spend the first hundred days
intensive and immersive listening exercise. i've had... it started with a townhall meeting that was attended by 1600 people and watched by many more. and that was a very dynamic dialogue mostly with students. the topic of diversity was probably the single one that was mo mentioned. and on that day -that was very soon after i arrived here early september- i launched a listening exercise. so i've had over 40 meetings, more tha5000 people have attended those meetings. we also opened a virtual mailbox and we got more than 1400 entries. and i'd like to say that's without counting all the comments about the football coach. [laughter] so the 1400... i would count almost as many about the footba coach. >> which we'll get to in just a bit. [laughter] >> i'm sure we will. i mean, i was very energized by the level of participation, and i've heard a lot of very important comments and suggestions. the university
celebrating its 100th anniversary. we are 90 years old. in 10 years we'll be 100 years old. so what i propose is to start now designing and embarking on the roadmap to our new century. and so a lot of t dialogue was, how do we see this university? how would we like to see this university in its second century? and then, what steps do we need to take to get there? >> your predecessor, you mentioned your friend donna shalala... she was committed to bringing this university to excellence, to really taking it to another level. and she accomplished that, she was very successful in that. what is your strategy to continue to bring this university to an academic level that even greater than it is right now? >> so, you know, i've synthesized a lot of the comments from the listening, exercising four aspirations. the
there, especially when it comes to academic excellence, if you think of research the key now is to make sure we foster a problem orientation that mobilizes all the disciplines. then we try to see where we can find the connections between disciplines. for example, if you think of a huge problem of our times which is rising sea levels, you need to... we have the scientists, we have a fantastic school of marine and atmosphericiccience, we have engineers, we have architects and experts in urban design... we have the health exexrts because of all the health consequences of climate change... we need to take the next step in research by breaking the barriers, the artificial barriers that you ofn have on departments and disciplines, and really getting people together. in education, the other side of academic
potential for innovation. we are really in the middle of an educational revolution, and i do think that high-quality engaged online platforms is a very important part of the new technology that we have. in a way that enriches... not just extends our reach globally, but also it enriches the experience of our students so that when they are in the classroom it's a much more active mode of learning, not listening to a lecture. you do a lecture in your dorm or at home and you come for a much more hands-on, engaged experience of learning. so the university's done a lot of progress on education and innovation. and so that's the part of excellence. and i also believe the university should be relevant. there is no conflict between excellence and relevance. and by relevance i mean being connected to the problems of the community. and
of miami, was born with that idea. bear in mind it's not a university in miami. it's thth university of miami, it belongs the city, it's connected to the city. and increasingly our community is what happens here, but also what happens around the world, and particularly what happens in our hemisphere. so i heard a very strong desire to really be the hemispheric university. because miami is the gateway to the whole of the americas, serving as a force, a positive force to connect latin america, the caribbean, the united states which of course is a key part of our own hemisphere and a very diverse country itlf, canada, the whole hemisphere, and through that connect it to the world. so we're already a ry international university but beg much more... taking much more advantage of the strategic value of our location in this which is the most cosmopolitan city. >>we have a lot much more to
much more of "impact." [ ] >> welcome back. canes fans want to know what dr. frenk has to say about the football coach, markicht. but first, the president's view of the role the universitylays in public health. so, dr. frenk, you are considered an authority on public health. you were the health minister of your native
from harvard where you accomplished a lot there. what is the importance of the um hospital and the medical program here at the university of miami? >> the academic health stem we have here is a very important part of the university. it's two thirds of the budget so financially it's a huge impast. it's our most visible face to the community because we provide, we are one of the main providers of health care in south florida. it's a major hub for research and innovation, and of course it serves a huge educucional purpose in educating the next generation of doctors, nurses, and other health professionals. so the health system of the university of miami is a huge part of the university. and we happen to be in the middle of the most profound transformation of the us health system since medicare and medicaid were passed 50 years ago. so with the
care act, which is going on right now as we speak, there's going to be major changes. and i think the big change is to move from a health system that rewards volume, how many services you provide, to one that rewards val: how many of your patients got cured? how many diseases did you prevent in the community? how good was the patient experience? because when we're sick, we're in a very vulnerable situation and we don't just want to receive the best medical treatment, we also want to be treated in a very humane and cordial and respectful manner. so the patient experience is also very important. i think the university of miami has all the elements to lead the way for the nation and what is going to be this new era of value-based healthcare. >>is that something that really attracted you to this position? because of your unique perspective as a physician, and
course in harvard, the fact that you could really make a difference in this community in that regard. >> it certainly was something that attracted me very much, and i think the board ofofrustees was looking for the next president and was also looking for someone who understood the complexities of large health systems in the time of very, very rapid change. and i do have that experience. but of course, i'm the president for the whole university and it was very important to have a very strong senior vice president, and we just got that with dr. altschuler. >>and when you talk about addressing the whole university, we've talked about academic excellence and we've talked about health, we have to talk about the athletic program. because for r many years, especially the football program at this university, it was very important, not only to the unersity but for this community. when i was a student here in the 80s, this university was known nationwide because of football. that's positive, and it can also be a negative. many
shalala was here, especially in terms of the athletic program. how important is it for you? we saw your commitment at the press conference when you announced the new coach. but i would like to hear from your mouth, how important is this program for the university and for you? >> i believe that athletics is an integral part of the university. it's not something separate. and if it's well-managed it can be an incredibly valuable component of the life of the university. and i do think we have, again, a good program. of course, in the past there were some issues, but i think the university moved swiftly to resolve everything. we are past any controversy and we are now in a very positive, constructive mode, looking forward. to me, good athletics program, including very prominently the football team, but including the whole athletic
the university has a comprehensive athletics program. football is very visible now, basketball is great because we are doing great, baseball is... but we cultivate a lot of the olympic sports. we have a very important women's athletic program. we have a great soccer team with many accomplishments. it is a comprehensive athletics program. and that should be, and can be, and it is at the university of miami an integral part of education. >> let's talk about the football program in particular. tell us about the process of picking this new coach. >> well, i think, you know, as i came in it was clear that there were some challenges. and... we were... i was observing with blake james, our athletic director, the performance of our
decision that it was time for a change. and there wasn't a lot of sense in waiting any longer. and we... i think were very fortunate... i did set up a process with the participation of the athletics and ad hoc committee of t t board of trustees to conduct a search for the coach, just like we search for a president or a dean or a professor. we did a search, and the search involved very valuable members, both former athletes and current athletes, and members of the community: fans who are very... >> passionate. >> passionate about the program. [laughter] >> and so there was some consultation, and then of course i got a lot of unsolicited advice on who should be the next coach. >> why did you think that he would be a good fit for the university of miami?
first of all, the fact that he is an alum and that he was a quarterback, i think just brings the sense pride, which again, a well-managed football program or athletic program in general, it's very, very important to build a sense of pride in this institution. and mark just personifies that. but the most important thing for me was... in talking to him was how... how coincident we were in this idea that a successful program... academic excellence is about success on and off the field. >>will you be going to the mes? >> of course. well, i went to every single game already in my first season here. i like... after my medical studies i did my doctoral studies at the university of michigan. so i got intensive exposure to football, and i like the game.
>> yeah, it's a game... of course, there's the physicality, but there's a game of great strategy. and i have always liked it. so i went to every game. >> getting back to the student, which is really what it's all about here at the university of miami, how do you create a student with a global mind, thinking globally? >> that's an imperative of our world because we live in a globalized world. and one of the other big themes in my listening exercise was the notion that the university has to serve as a model for the larger society. and our biggest legacy and the way we influence society... of course, our research... but the most importa one is through our students. so developing not just the academic knowledge, but the set of attitudes. as they say, not just the aptitudes but also the attitudes towards life, and that includes tolerance.
learning to be good citizens of the world. because our students are going to go out into a world that's very diverse, and you need to know and learn how to get along, respect people who are different from you. different in many ways, not just how they look but also what they think, how they pray, what are their preferences in many domains. and becoming a good citizen who is also certainly a good local citizen but also a good global citizen because we are in such an interdependent world that anything that happens anywhere in the world affects us. no one is isolated. and understanding that is very important. i also see the career paths of our students, and more and more you have very, i call it career plasticity, you know, career paths that change. the days when you went out and you got onjob and you stayed there for your whole life... i think that still happens, but it's a
got to be thinking not just of educating our students for their first job, but for their entire career. and that career is increasingly going to be diverse in itself, and we need to learn not just the facts... most of the facts that we are taught at school are obsolete already by the time we graduate. it's the life skills, the critical thinking, the way we teach our students how to examine a problem, analyze it, and then have a strategy to deal with the problem. those are the skills that will help thebe successful. and then the attitudes in terms of respect, respecting, being tolerant... that's the way we produce a force for positive change in society. >> you talked about the 100th anniversary of this university in 10 years, and we hope to have you leading this university for that big anniversary celebration. what would you consider to be a successful
>> i think if we look at the four big themes... on excellence, one thing that attracted me to the university of miami, it's been on an upward trajectory, you mentioned pres. shalala's... and all of our predecessors. they built this university through sometimes very, very difficult times to the current level of excellence. you know, it's one of the top universities of this country and the world. taking it to the next level in research and educion, and leading the way in this education revolution. i also see it as a university that is accessible so that every person who has the capacity to be admitted to the university will not find an unsurmountable financial barrier. i would like to see a university where we meet 100% of the financial needs of our students. what does that
and that allows them to study here, but also we do that without putting on them an undue financial burden that's going to limit the possibilities once they graduate. because if you're spending 30 or 40% of your income in the first 10 years of your... >> to pay your loans. >> ... to pay your loans, that's not a good situation. so, it's that combination of excellence with access that i think is going to be absolutely critical. then on the relevance theme, being connected to our community. i see, and this is an even deeper connection to our community, national and local. when it comes to being a hemispheric university, i would like to see a university that really, really is connected to multiple universities throughout latin america, the caribbean, and north america. and with the rest of the world. and there are many, many ways. one of them -
them is being the hub for technological innovation. i think miami has all the elements to be the technological hub of the americas. bring the talent so that we go from science to solutions. because we need too make the discoveries, but then we need to take those discoveries the next step and provide real solutions, whether it's a new drug, a new device, a new understanding of the consequencesf climate change and the way to mitigate those consequences. we have to go from science to solutions. and i see a university committed to that throughout the entire hemisphere. and then on the idea of being a model to society, i do think that developing a university that's very diverse... because diversity is not just the right to do from an ethical point of view, it's also the smart thing to do because you build a strong place if it's diverse, and where everyone feels that they belong here. if we can achieve that, this will be the absolutely next great