“We seek new heights, new achievements by our students, new discoveries by our faculty and staff, and a new commitment to the state.”

With these words at her inauguration, Bernadette Gray-Little began eight years as chancellor of the University of Kansas. Under her leadership, the university created new admission standards and curriculum guidelines, gained national designations for our cancer and Alzheimer’s centers, completed the largest educational fundraising campaign in state history, and transformed our campuses with new and renovated facilities.

Chancellor Gray-Little’s accomplishments inspire all of us on the Hill to continue the climb, seeking new heights in teaching, service, and research.

  • Bernadette Gray-Little named KU’s 17th chancellor

"The complexity of our modern world demands an evolved university, and the challenges we face as a society demand an enlightened one, a university that uses the inherent good of education and research to meet the challenges of our time…"
Inaugural address

  • New pharmacy building dedicated
  • KU launches Bioscience & Technology Business Center
  • School of Medicine-Salina opens
  • Wichita branch of pharmacy school holds first classes
  • School of Medicine-Wichita expands to four-year program
  • KU Alzheimer’s Disease Center receives National Institute on Aging designation
  • KU awards new four-year renewable scholarships
  • KU Cancer Center receives National Cancer Institute designation
  • Measurement, Materials & Sustainable Environment Center completed
  • Business, Engineering, Science & Technology building opens on Edwards Campus
  • KU receives largest grant in university history, $24.5 million from U.S. Department of Education
  • KU launches KU Core, the university’s new undergraduate curriculum
  • Chancellor named to executive committees of Association of American Universities (AAU) and Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU)
  • KU reports record in externally funded research expenditures for 2011-12, receiving a total of $275.2 million to support research at all KU campuses

"… Discoveries don’t just take place in a laboratory or a library. They take place in concert halls and practice rooms, and in any place any time you bring creative, driven people together to share ideas."
— Introducing the KU Wind Ensemble before Carnegie Hall performance

"Always strive to be something bigger than your selfie."
— Commencement speech

  • KU unveils 2014-24 Campus Master Plan
  • KU receives $58 million gift for scholarships and fellowships from Al and Lila Self
  • Groundbreaking held for Earth, Energy & Environment Center
  • The Forum addition to Marvin Hall completed.

"We … welcome an American president … and we welcome him with a version of what Teddy Roosevelt called the best college cheer he ever heard 
— Barack Chalk, Jayhawk!"
— Chancellor welcomes President Barack Obama at KU visit

  • Chancellor becomes chair of board of directors for APLU
  • Self, Oswald residence halls completed; McCarthy Hall completed
  • Learned Engineering Expansion Phase 2 completed
  • Swarthout Recital Hall renovated
  • KU Medical Center breaks ground on Health Education Building

Third phase of Jayhawk Boulevard reconstruction finished.

"As you leave this place, I ask that you dedicate yourself not only to doing well, but to doing good, and to being a good person."
— Commencement speech

  • KU freshman class grows for fifth straight year, sets record for academic talent
  • KU enrollment grows for third straight year
  • Far Above campaign concludes, raises $1.66 billion
  • KU hires 12th and final Foundation Distinguished Professor
  • Spencer Museum of Art renovation finished
  • Capitol Federal Hall completed
  • DeBruce Center completed
  • Construction begins on Central District redevelopment, including academic and research facilities, a student residence hall, student apartments, and a student union
  • Bernadette Gray-Little announces she will step down as chancellor at the end of the academic year.

As we stand at the top of the Hill, we honor the legacy of Chancellor Bernadette Gray-Little, who came to a great university and after eight years, leaves it better still.

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