With nine months already on the job, Mike Driscoll will be officially inaugurated Friday afternoon as president of Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Driscoll, who began his duties last July, came to IUP from the University of Alaska-Anchorage, where he was provost and executive vice chancellor.
Driscoll said he came to IUP because of what makes it a great campus.
“This is a place filled with wonderful people who are ready to do great work to serve our students and move our institution ahead, and that’s been confirmed over and over again since we arrived,” he said. “We were also really — my wife and I — pleasantly surprised by how much we enjoy living in Indiana, Pennsylvania.”
While Driscoll is considering long-term plans for the university’s 150-year anniversary in 2025, he’s more focused on the school’s short-term goal of fixing its budget.
“We’re pleased that the governor proposed flat funding for system universities in the budget for next year, but of course our expenses have gone up, and so we’d love to see even a little bit more on top of that to make life easier in terms of continuing to do all the great services that we’re doing now,” he said.
If the budget can’t be balanced with more funding, Driscoll said some programs, such as the number of majors offered, would have to be reduced.
Driscoll is the 26th president of IUP and the first to hold that title without an interim tag since 2010, when Tony Atwater resigned from the position.
“It’s a wonderful university, (and) it’s an exciting day for me and my family of course,” Driscoll said. “But more importantly it’s an exciting time for IUP. We have a lot of strengths here, and we’re just going to re-focus them and move ahead to serve the commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the wonderful students that we see.”