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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Q&A with Ann Weaver Hart: One year into presidency

Mylo Erickson
Mylo Erickson / Arizona Daily Wildcat President Ann Hart reflects upon her past year in office, along with her plans for the future of the UA campus.

What has surprised you the most about the UA?

What surprised me most about the University of Arizona … was a combination of incredible pride and uncertainty in the face of major challenge. And by that I mean the U of A is a marvelous institution with a grand tradition of accomplishments. You place that in a context where there have been so many changes, the loss of $180 [million], $190 million dollars of state funding and the challenges of the last four or five years, and it presents perilous opportunities for change and development, but under pretty intense pressure.

What has been the biggest change or adjustment you’ve had to make since you moved to Tucson?

I feel very much at home here, so I’m not sure I would describe it as a big change or adjustment, but the culture of every state in which I’ve worked in higher education is a bit different, and it’s important to get to know the place where you’re working. I’ve focused a lot on getting to know our legislators, understanding and knowing and having a relationship with the governor, working with our Board of Regents and really trying to get an in-depth sense of the kind of place we are.

Reflecting on your year here as a whole, what has it been like for you?

I have been increasingly impressed with the incredible intelligence, knowledge and pride that everyone associated with the University of Arizona articulates and along with that growing appreciation for how hard people work and how committed they are. Just an overwhelming sense of privilege that I’ve been given the opportunity to lead this great university.

What’s your favorite memory at the UA so far?

Commencement. It was a celebration of years and years of hard work on the part of all the graduates, and love and support from their family members and friends in an environment that I felt captured the joy, exuberance and dignity of the accomplishments being celebrated that night.

What do you most look forward to accomplishing at the UA?

Implementing the academic plan, seeing outcomes and results from the hard work and planning we’ve done this year.

Is there anything else you’d like to add?

I love it here!

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