In this episode of shining the spotlight, we have breaking news of the appointment for the 30th Harvard University President. NYTimes reports that Harvard University announced on Thursday that its new president would be Claudine Gay
Harvard University names Claudine Gay as the first person of color president
Harvard University will be led by a person of colour for the first time in 400 years, Professor Claudine Gay. She has been elected President, to begin on July 1st, 2023.
The president at Harvard University is the university’s top administrator. Also, he or she doubles as the Harvard Corporation’s ex officio president. In essence, each is appointed by and accountable to the other members of that body, which delegate the day-to-day operation of the university to the president.
Professor Gay, a distinguished scholar of government and African and African-American studies, previously served as Dean of the university’s Faculty of Arts and Sciences (FAS). The university has only had a female president twice in its history.
Claudine Gay, described as a remarkable and inclusive leader by Penny Pritzker, chair of Harvard’s presidential search committee, is recognised for her efforts to increase access to Harvard by improving financial aid.
Recently, she successfully led the University’s largest and most academically diverse faculty during the year of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Gay graduated from Stanford in 1992 with a bachelor’s degree in economics and the Anna Laura Myers Prize for the best undergraduate thesis. She earned her Ph.D. in government from Harvard in 1998. Here, she was awarded the Toppan Prize for best dissertation in political science.
Gay, who was born to Haitian immigrants, reflected on the path her parents paved for her, which led her to a career in academia.
“They came to the United States with very little and worked their way through college while raising our family. They believe that education enables anything. Being an academic broadened my horizons and enabled me to realise a long-held ambition.”
This is a great win for diversity and inclusion. Postgraduate Nigeria celebrates this great feat and wishes Professor Gay success in her time as president.