The University of Florida’s likely next president is U.S. Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska, who the search committee revealed on Thursday was the only candidate. Ben Sasse Could be UF’s New President – Here are Some of his Opinion.
His background in higher education was praised by the committee; he is a historian by training, and he has frequently spoken about his plans to change American higher education. He was formerly the president of Midland University in Nebraska and taught at the University of Texas. However, his political background will unquestionably be helpful in this role as UF’s leader as well.
As prominent participants in state politics, university presidents are frequently spotted in Tallahassee during the crucial state budgeting season. For example, the university governing body frequently consists of former politicians and campaign contributors.
Sasse would take on the position of Florida’s premier university at a time when the institution’s independence from Governor Ron DeSantis has been regularly questioned. Professors filed a lawsuit against the University of Florida last year after the university forbade them from providing expert testimony in cases brought against the state.
Then, a faculty study said that there is a persistent fear of angering Florida officials at the university, resulting in the removal of racial references from course materials and researchers feeling under pressure to obliterate COVID-19 data. Following a university review, it was determined that the latter claims about the COVID-19 research had “no merit.”
A faculty committee study from earlier this year indicated that the university’s hiring of State Surgeon General Joseph Ladapo was expedited, in contravention of the school’s own hiring policies.
It’s unclear if Republican Sasse has ever interacted with Florida’s legislators or state government. He graduated from Yale and Harvard, the latter of which he attended at the same time as DeSantis. Sasse received a PhD in 2004, although DeSantis received his bachelor’s degree in 2001.
Sasse would leave the U.S. Senate just two years into his second six-year term if he is elected as the university’s new president. An Associated Press piece from the previous year stated that he was recently thought to have ambitions for higher office, including whispers of a potential 2024 presidential campaign.
Ben Sasse Could be UF’s New President – Here are Some of his Opinion. Following is a list of Sasse’s public writings, statements, and remarks on numerous political and policy topics:
According to Sasse, a significant redesign of American higher education is required to better serve students and fulfil the demands of the modern workforce.
In May, he wrote an editorial for The Atlantic that opens, “American higher education is the envy of the world, yet it’s also failing our students on a large scale.” We need to create a network of universities that promotes social mobility rather than consolidating privilege.
More innovation, institutional variety, intellectual curiosity, adaptive learning, and degrees and certificates are all necessary for higher education to improve more lives.
Sasse claims that “the liberal arts unquestionably make this world a better place,” in contrast to DeSantis, who frequently compares some more theoretical degrees to “zombie studies” in remarks on their utility. There should be a greater interest in history, literature, and ethics among pupils.
However, Sasse asserts that technical education and trade schools are also crucial and that the more learning possibilities available, the better.
He is in favour of shattering the conventional wisdom that a degree can be acquired in any topic by earning a predetermined amount of credits over a predetermined period of time.
Few people will remain in one career in today’s rapidly evolving technological environment, he believes; instead, schools should prepare kids to be lifelong learners who are aware of the learning models that are most effective for them.
Ben Sasse Could be UF’s New President – Here are Some of his Opinion. Sasse has argued that the government should play a limited role in bringing about this revolution in education.
In a lengthy piece on his educational philosophy, he stated to the Deseret News that “we need the state’s role to be largely around money, but not around monopolistic administration and management of our institutions.” He said, “Good schools will pique pupils’ attention.” “Once that motor is working, and someone has a question, they’re going to figure out how to learn,”
Student loan forgiveness
In an essay for The Atlantic, Sasse argued that President Joe Biden’s proposal to cancel student loans “subsidize(s) failure” rather than changing the educational system.
He added, “Massive student debt forgiveness would largely benefit upper-class Americans who are going to be just fine without a bailout.” “It’s a backwards error.”
Partisanship and Donald Trump
In his first floor speech after being elected to the Senate, Sasse caused a commotion by criticizing the political egotism and narrow-mindedness of both parties.
He declared, “The people hate us all.”
Since then, he has persisted in going against the grain, criticizing Donald Trump frequently and loudly among other things. Sasse was one of the few Republican senators to vote in favour of convicting Trump of encouraging an uprising at the 2021 impeachment trial.
In a long statement following his vote in February 2021, he stated that “we shall lose our institutions if we continuously allow tribalism to blind us against protecting them”.
This institution needs to respect itself enough to inform the executive that some limits cannot be crossed, he continued, warning that Trump’s “lies” about the election being rigged have put the nation “dangerously close to a bloody constitutional crisis.”
He made a blunt video around the same time in which he criticized “anger addicts” for being out of touch with most Nebraska conservatives and buying into “the crazy worship of one person” after learning local GOP committee members were seeking to punish him.
He has admitted that he cast his ballot for Mike Pence in both the 2016 and 2020 elections rather than Donald Trump.
Ben Sasse Could be UF’s New President – Here are Some of his Opinion. According to a passage from Maggie Haberman’s book on the former president, Trump unexpectedly endorsed Sasse for reelection in 2020 after Sens. Lindsey Graham and Ted Cruz persuaded him not to support a rival.
Trump stated, “Like a schmuck, I went along with it.
Vaccines for COVID
Ben Sasse Could be UF’s New President – Here are Some of his Opinion. Sasse stated that he favour COVID vaccinations but disagreed with Biden’s proposal to require vaccinations for all federal employees.
In a 2021 statement, he claimed that “this mandate is an end run around the Constitution.” “No one at OSHA was ever chosen by the American people, and no law grants OSHA unrestricted authority.
The rule implemented by the Biden Administration is a bad public health policy in addition to being unconstitutional crap. A lot of Americans are becoming less confident about getting vaccines as a result of shoddy federal regulations.
These vaccines are, in my opinion, immensely life-saving, but the administration has done a terrible job of convincing people of this.