University System of Maryland (USM) Chancellor Robert L. Caret was elected chair today of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) Board of Directors. He succeeds University of Virginia President Teresa A. Sullivan.
“For 130 years, APLU has been the nation’s premier advocate for public universities and public higher education,” Caret said. “At a time when the value proposition of higher education is under scrutiny in Washington and several State Houses across America, APLU’s work as our collective representative is more important than ever before.”
“As the current and former leader of two state higher education systems, I believe strongly that public universities and colleges have a collective impact on our society that is far greater than the sum of our parts,” he continued. “Working together on a shared mission, we educate our citizenry, discover medical treatments and cures, create revolutionary new technologies, fuel economic growth and improve the lives of millions of individuals and families every year. In the coming months, we must continue to the advocate for the work we do and the people we serve.”
With 237 member institutions, including USM’s 14 campuses and centers across Maryland, APLU is a research, policy, and advocacy organization dedicated to strengthening and advancing the work of public universities. Founded in 1887, APLU is North America’s oldest higher education association with member institutions in all 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, four U.S. territories, Canada, and Mexico.
APLU’s agenda is built on the three pillars of increasing degree completion and academic success, advancing scientific research, and expanding engagement. Annually, member campuses enroll 4.9 million undergraduates and 1.3 million graduate students, award 1.2 million degrees, employ 1.2 million faculty and staff, and conduct $43.9 billion in university-based research.
“Bob Caret has an exceptional record of leading public universities to greater academic excellence, research impact, and community engagement,” said APLU President Peter McPherson. “We’re very pleased he has been chosen as the next chair of the APLU Board of Directors and we look forward drawing on his expertise and leadership over the coming year.”
Caret joined the USM as chancellor on July 1, 2015. Previously, he served four years as president of the University of Massachusetts System, where he successfully pursued a 50-50 funding formula that resulted in the state and students contributing equally to the university’s general education program and a two year freeze on in-state undergraduate tuition and mandatory fees.
Caret was president of Towson University from 2003 to 2011, where he also served as a faculty member, dean, executive vice president and provost during his more than 25-year tenure. At Towson, he created partnerships with regional business, non-profit and civic organizations; raised student graduation rates; undertook a capital fundraising and building campaign; and expanded the university’s online courses.
Caret also served from 1995 to 2003 as president of San Jose State University, part of the California State University System. He is a member of several national organizations, serving as the vice chair of the National Association of System Heads and on boards that include the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, the Business-Higher Education Forum, the National Security Higher Education Advisory Board, the Southern Regional Higher Education Board, Higher Ed for Higher Standards Board of Advisors, and the Government University Industry Research Roundtable.
Caret earned a Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of New Hampshire and a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Suffolk University in Boston.
Source: University System of Maryland