KSU President Warren commemorates 100 days at annual Bowman Breakfast

President Beverly Warren waits for questions from the audience after recounting her first 100 days as Kent State Universitys President during the Bowman Breakfast Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014.

President Beverly Warren waits for questions from the audience after recounting her first 100 days as Kent State University’s President during the Bowman Breakfast Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014.

Marissa Barnhart

Approximately 400 Kent State faculty, staff, donors and community members shared breakfast in the Kent Student Center Ballroom as part of the first ever sold-out Bowman Breakfast on Wednesday morning.

Kent State President Beverly Warren reflected on her first 100 days in her keynote speech.

“Each of those days has been a whirlwind of activity,” Warren said in her speech. “Each has challenged me and affirmed my early perceptions that the people who call Kent their home are a special group. I am so pleased now that Kent is my new home.”

Warren also talked about what she has been doing since the beginning of her term. She said she has met with past Kent State presidents Michael Schwartz, Carol Cartwright and Lester Lefton. She also said her first day on the job marked the beginning of her listening tour, which she said is important in finding the heart of Kent State.

Warren spoke about the power of partnership, particularly the Town-Gown partnership between Kent State and the City of Kent, and she said that while she didn’t see downtown Kent before its revamp, she thinks it is a testament to good partnership. She said she is here to “help build the momentum that has taken us so far.”

Warren’s top-five priorities as president:   

  1. Making sure students in every major receive the education needed to succeed and increasing the diversity of people and ideas to create a more well-rounded university.

  2. Enhancing and remodeling Kent State’s distinctive identity, which will be influenced by what she has learned from her listening tours.

  3. Increasing global competitiveness and support in research, international exchange programs and international students and alumni.

  4. Leveraging global reach for local impact. She wants Kent State to be a global competitor, and for the city to be the kind of “cool city that attracts creative people and is known for a great place to live and work.”

  5. Planning for a sustainable and vibrant future. She said this is about ensuring the university’s financial stability and said this is important because state support of universities is decreasing.


She also talked about Kent State’s inclusion in the U.S. News and World Report’s 2015 edition of best colleges.

“Kent State is the only public university in northeast Ohio to make the first tier of the publication’s best national universities,” Warren said in her speech.

She then talked about students and said she wants to see students graduate after four years. A good university, she said, graduates more than 50 percent of its students in six years. She said Kent’s State’s six-year graduation rate has raised to 54.8 percent, the highest in university history.

“I’m going to say this is good news, but we must do better,” Warren said during her speech.

Warren then went on to tell her top five priorities for her time as president, which included developing a distinct Kent State identity, increasing global competitiveness and planning for a sustainable and vibrant future.

She ended her speech by encouraging people to be innovative, out-of-the-box thinkers and to work together to create a strong university.

“Together, we can and will make a difference,” Warren said in her speech. “I can’t wait to make the journey with you.”

Matthias Tayala, junior physical education major, was recognized for his accomplishments with the Kent State track team. Jerry Fiala, mayor of the City of Kent, congratulated Tayala on his success, and officially named Oct. 8 “Matthias Tayala day.”

The breakfast concluded with prize giveaways that included gift cards to local restaurants and gift bags from shops downtown.

Contact Marissa Barnhart at [email protected].