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Published: Saturday, 8/23/2008

BGSU interim head vows momentum won't slow

Carol Cartwright speaks to faculty and staff at the Bowen-Thompson Student Union with school about to start. Carol Cartwright speaks to faculty and staff at the Bowen-Thompson Student Union with school about to start.
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BOWLING GREEN - Carol Cartwright told Bowling Green State University faculty and staff yesterday that the university "will not miss a beat" during this year of transition.

Ms. Cartwright, the interim president of BGSU, addressed nearly 1,000 staff members in anticipation of the 2008-2009 school year that starts Monday.

She recapped the university's history and her plans to build upon that legacy, and presented the challenges of today and the future in a positive tone.

"This is a time in our history when we must be prepared for endless opportunities that are ahead of us," she said. "My commitment to you is that we will not miss a beat."

Ms. Cartwright is serving as interim president while BGSU searches for a permanent replacement for Sidney Ribeau, who is now the president of Howard University in Washington.

She said she considers her role during this interim period "vitally important" to make sure BGSU doesn't idle while searching for new leadership.

"I think you will agree that slowing down now would be the wrong approach. The stakes are too high," she said. "We need to keep moving forward, and in some cases we need to move quickly."

And it's a busy time for BGSU, she said, since the university is planning its 100-year anniversary for 2010, working with the state as it begins the early stages of the chancellor's strategic plan for higher education, and attempting to find solutions to the challenges of recruiting students to Bowling Green.

Ellen Williams, chairman of the BGSU faculty senate, said she was delighted with Ms. Cartwright's message and the tone she set for the school year.

"While she addressed those challenges, I don't think she put it into a negative context," Ms. Williams said. "I think she put it more as a challenge to all of us that it's up to us to provide the leadership to make this a really good year."

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