The University of Nebraska Board of Regents today unanimously approved the appointment of Jeffrey P. Gold, M.D., as chancellor of the University of Nebraska at Omaha, positioning the campus to build on the 18-month period of growth and momentum it has experienced under Dr. Gold’s interim leadership.
Dr. Gold is scheduled to serve as UNO chancellor through June 30, 2022, at which time a successor selected in a national search would assume leadership of UNO.
Dr. Gold, chancellor of the University of Nebraska Medical Center since 2014 and UNO’s interim chancellor since 2017, was named the priority candidate for UNO chancellor by NU President Hank Bounds on Nov. 5. As required by state law, his candidacy underwent a 30-day public vetting period that included open forums and feedback opportunities for UNO students, faculty, staff and stakeholders.
Bounds thanked the UNO community for their input throughout the search process. "Again and again, I’ve heard how much Jeff Gold cares about our students, how committed he is to growing our impact, and how creatively he approaches collaboration, not just between the Omaha campuses but with all university partners," Bounds said. "Jeff has a deep understanding of and appreciation for the distinct and vital missions of each campus, and he is focused on how those missions can complement each other as we work to transform the quality of life and economic well-being of our state. I’m impressed by what UNO’s talented students, faculty and staff have accomplished under Jeff’s leadership, and I’m excited about the achievements yet to come."
Dr. Gold said: "I am proud of my time as a part of the Maverick culture. UNO is a truly transformational force in our students’ lives and the communities we serve. Thanks to our exceptional faculty and staff, I am certain the years ahead of us will bring continued bold thinking and mission-driven growth in access and outcomes. I am honored to play a role in such vital work and to continue my leadership of two phenomenal institutions that are changing lives daily through education, research and service."
UNO’s recent accomplishments include an incoming class that set records in both size and diversity; research growth including record-high external funding and expanded success in technology transfer; growth in academic programs and facilities; and operational collaborations with UNMC and within the entire university system that have yielded critical savings and efficiencies.
Bounds said leadership stability in the near term will allow the campus to build on those successes. UNO and UNMC will remain separate institutions and the university’s plan is for each campus to ultimately have its own chancellor.
A Message from Chancellor Gold
On Thursday, Dr. Gold released this message to the faculty, staff and students of UNO:
Dear UNO Faculty, Staff and Students,
Just more than a year and a half ago, we started a journey together. Today, with the University of Nebraska Board of Regents approving my appointment as UNO chancellor, I am writing to share my vision for the next steps in that journey.
I want to express my sincere gratitude for all of the kind words I have heard since President Bounds' initial announcement. I would be hard-pressed to find a more welcoming or collaborative campus. Universities are first and foremost defined by the people advancing their missions. Your support, more than anything else, has convinced me that extending my commitment to serve as UNO's chancellor is the right decision at the right time.
So what do the years ahead of us look like? Your achievements give us a blueprint to follow, one that builds on our current growth trajectory. Through our shared efforts, we will continue to drive innovation in education and discovery. We will develop new academic and student support programs. We will expand access to exceptional opportunities. We will strengthen community ties and foster new relationships.
As you know, I believe audacious goals inspire the best in us, which is why we are building plans for the campuswide "completion imperative," as well as several others. This represents a shared goal of a 100% graduation rate. The need is too urgent, the cause too vital, not to pursue bold thinking on what we can accomplish in the areas of retention and graduation.
Continued collaboration between UNO and UNMC is also part of our future, even as both remain separate institutions with unique and equally important missions. The transition advisory process of last year included many valuable takeaways on how we can best work together, building on current synergy and developing new partnerships that strengthen both campuses. We will continue these conversations in the years to come. And of course, our collaborations are not limited to the two Omaha campuses. We have exciting partnerships underway with our University colleagues in Lincoln, Kearney and indeed the entire state which we will deepen and expand in the years ahead.
Personally, I will continue to strive to strengthen communication, enhance transparency and reduce silos. Please know that I welcome your questions and ideas at any time. I am first to admit that my dual role keeps me busy, but I will always find time to answer an email or grab a quick coffee. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for everything you do for our university. The inspiring stories of our graduates who received their diplomas last week is compelling evidence of the value of what we do. You are making a difference and I am very grateful for your work on behalf of this fine institution.
Take time to rest and recharge over this winter break. Happy holidays to all who celebrate. I hope that you, like me, cannot wait to see what the next year will bring.
Jeffrey Gold, M.D.
About the University of Nebraska at Omaha
Located in one of America’s best cities to live, work and learn, the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s premier metropolitan university. With more than 15,000 students enrolled in 200-plus programs of study, UNO is recognized nationally for its online education, graduate education, military friendliness and community engagement efforts. Founded in 1908, UNO has served learners of all backgrounds for more than 100 years and is dedicated to another century of excellence both in the classroom and in the community.