Before taking the stage at Ingram Hall for the Chancellor’s Lecture Series Oct. 3, retired U.S. Navy Adm. James Stavridis talked about his journeys on the seas and beyond on the latest episode of The Zeppos Report.
Stavridis, who now serves as dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, spoke with Vanderbilt Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos about the key moments in his schooling at the U.S. Naval Academy that guided him to a lifelong career at sea.
I wish for everyone that they had a moment like that where they suddenly knew what they wanted to do and they could follow that path, that true north.
“I wish for everyone that they had a moment like that where they suddenly knew what they wanted to do and they could follow that path, that true north,” Stavridis said.
Stavridis retired in 2013 as the 16th supreme allied commander at NATO. He is a thought leader on 21st-century geopolitics, focusing on the topic in his newest book, Sea Power: The History and Geopolitics of the World’s Oceans (2017, Penguin).
In the podcast, Stavridis and Zeppos navigate their conversation through several global security topics, including cyberthreats and environmental changes in the seaways. They end by discussing America’s leading role in education across the globe.
“What America does really well is university education and research,” Zeppos said. “And we live in a time where I do have to stand up for this role.”
Stavridis resonated with this observation, noting that a flourishing higher education system that educates students from across the globe is crucial to America’s role in the world.
“Every day I wake up thinking about how we can connect better into this global ecosystem,” Stavridis said.