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From The President

Teaching, research and public service

That tripartite mission of teaching, research and public service has distinguished the University of Nevada, Reno and America's other land-grant universities for more than 125 years. Yet the power of that aggregated mission is often under appreciated by many people, even those who speak proudly as alumni of our land-grant institutions.

Perhaps that occurs because the value of high quality instruction and public service is self-evident, while the public perception of research is lesser known and understood. Nonetheless it is the research contribution to that tripartite mission that makes Nevada and other land-grant universities special and has made our land-grant system the envy of nations around the world.

What makes land-grant campuses distinctive is the way in which research permeates the university experience. Because research is an integral duty at Nevada — not simply a desirable campus activity — our university seeks for its faculty those individuals who are research-minded artists and scholars. Thus, we seek to attract top people who are personally and professionally committed to advancing knowledge in their respective fields. Such faculty members, we know, can make a qualitative difference in our classrooms and in our public service.

The reciprocal is that the best artists and scholars share that same sense. They know they have the university's support in their efforts to extend the frontiers of their own knowledge. They know they are expected to engage students in a learning process that uses the most current information to stimulate critical thinking, discovery, and innovation. And they know their work can make a difference in the education of their students and in the lives of many others who depend upon university research for new ideas, leadership, and support.

At Nevada, and other land-grant universities, our artistic and research output is the cornerstone of our instructional and public service programs. It enriches the disciplines we teach and contributes to state-of-the-art information for our public service. It also generates new information that stimulates the growth and development of our society.

In the past year alone, Nevada faculty earned a record $110 million in external support for sponsored projects. More than half of that total is represented by innovative research, projects that earned their own external support from government agencies and private corporations after rigorous competitive reviews judged by scholarly peers from throughout the country. But the real value of that effort is much greater than $110 million. It will multiply time and again for years to come as the product of that work influences all that is taught and all that is learned by today's students at the University of Nevada.

— John M. Lilley, President

 

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