Chancellor’s Letter

  • photo of Chancellor Daniel Diermeier outside Kirkland Hall

    The Best Is Yet to Come: With a vibrant 150-year history to build upon, Vanderbilt is poised for further greatness

    In celebration of Vanderbilt’s Sesquicentennial, these pages are part of a story that’s 150 years in the making. It begins in 1873—a pivotal time in our nation’s history—when our visionary founders teamed up to build a great university in a war-torn city in Tennessee. In 2023, the story continues with Vanderbilt today and looks toward our global future together. Read More

    Jun 20, 2023

  • photo of Chancellor Daniel Diermeier outside Kirkland Hall

    Making History Together: Upcoming Sesquicentennial offers opportunity to consider our past, envision our future

    Amid the rush of the new academic year, we’re also preparing for a rare opportunity to pause and reflect. In 2023, Vanderbilt will mark the 150th anniversary of our founding—our Sesquicentennial. We’re planning a yearlong commemoration in which our entire Vanderbilt community will be invited to consider our past and, especially, to envision our future. Read More

    Nov 7, 2022

  • photo of Chancellor Daniel Diermeier outside Kirkland Hall

    Daring to Grow: ‘Together, we are building The Great University of the 21st Century’

    The spirit of “daring to grow” is inherent to our Vanderbilt way of life, and it extends to every member of our community. It is behind every groundbreaking discovery made by our faculty members, whether in the laboratory, clinic or conference room or within a single line of music or stroke of paint. It lives among our coaches and student-athletes as they continually raise the bar for their own accomplishments. It is exemplified by our staff members, whose dedication to our collaborative culture of excellence helps to create the environment in which we all thrive. And it is especially present among our alumni as they help one another to strive for, and achieve, new ambitions. At Vanderbilt, we learn for life. Read More

    Jul 1, 2022

  • Chancellor Daniel Diermeier (John Russell/Vanderbilt University)

    The Vanderbilt Way: Far-reaching aspirations guide Vanderbilt, even during turbulent year

    In my first year as chancellor, I witnessed the extraordinary efforts of everyone in the Vanderbilt community to carry on our mission of scholarship, creative expression and education despite the multiple challenges we faced. It was our proudest moment, but moreover, it clarified my initial impressions of the enduring strength of Vanderbilt’s culture. Read More

    Jan 30, 2022

  • Vanderbilt University

    The Long View: Far-reaching aspirations guide Vanderbilt, even during turbulent year

    The 2020–21 academic year in many ways was defined by urgency and imminent priorities—from the rapid implementation of COVID-19 safety protocols and weekly testing to the procurement of technology required for hybrid teaching and the herculean planning behind the two in-person Commencement ceremonies we hosted this spring, to name just a few. I remain inspired by the way our community responded to these challenges with such profound resilience and innovative problem-solving. Read More

    Sep 3, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Strong Together: The Vanderbilt community’s hallmark spirit of compassion and courage shines through in turbulent times

    Whatever difficulties we face—in the world at large and closer to home—a united Vanderbilt spirit of compassion, intelligence, strength and courage pervades our community. Read More

    Feb 18, 2021

  • Vanderbilt University

    Creating Our Proudest Moment: Vanderbilt’s spirit of collaboration and compassion shines through amid historic circumstances

    As we continue to navigate a fall semester like no other, and as I embark on my first academic year as Vanderbilt’s chancellor, I am increasingly impressed by the strength of our university community. Read More

    Oct 26, 2020

  • photo of a path near Kirkland Hall at sunset

    ‘We Are Proud But Not Satisfied’: Advancing our mission together as One Vanderbilt

    Now, more than ever, as we find ourselves in the midst of historic change, it’s critical that we work as One Vanderbilt, a vibrant, collaborative community, to embark on our next chapter, writes Chancellor Daniel Diermeier. Read More

    Jul 27, 2020

  • photo of Susan R. Wente in front of Kirkland Hall

    ‘One Vanderbilt’: Hope in troubled times

    At a time when we are physically separate, the connections embodied by our One Vanderbilt community have become even more vital. Read More

    May 14, 2020

  • photo of Nashville skyline

    Chancellor’s Letter: Town and Gown

    I often say that Vanderbilt is in its strongest position ever within our nearly 150 years as an institution. While this momentum is the result of many university initiatives—from working to find the most talented and globally diverse students in the university’s history to breaking new ground in the humanities and sciences through bold, trans-institutional research—our success is also intertwined with that of our city and region. Read More

    Feb 17, 2020

  • Chancellor’s Letter: Trust, Transparency and Teamwork

    Chancellor’s Letter: Trust, Transparency and Teamwork

    The academic year is in full swing here at Vanderbilt. From Founders Walk and the start of classes to Family Weekend and Reunion gatherings, my new vantage point as interim chancellor has confirmed what I already believed: that Vanderbilt is stronger and more vibrant than ever before. Read More

    Nov 7, 2019

  • Vanderbilt University

    Chancellor’s Letter: Vanderbilt for Life

    Daniel Dubois/Vanderbilt University   Since coming to Vanderbilt in 2002, I have seen the university from many different perspectives—as a scholar and faculty member, a department chair, a mentor, a vice chancellor and as Vanderbilt’s provost, and even as the proud parent of an alumna after one… Read More

    Aug 20, 2019

  • photo of students at Commencement

    Chancellor’s Letter: What Comes Next

    It has been an honor to serve you during these past 11 years, and to devote more than three decades of my life to an institution so capable of driving enormous change. Read More

    May 23, 2019

  • aerial photo of Vanderbilt's campus

    Chancellor’s Letter: Shaping the Course of Things

    At Vanderbilt, there is no shortage of exploration. Every day our talented faculty, students and staff are driven to make discoveries—not just for the recognition, but for the chance to move the dial, to permeate the boundaries, to affect our society at large and for the better. Read More

    Feb 19, 2019

  • Vanderbilt University

    Chancellor’s Letter: The Vanderbilt Way

    Ten years ago we launched one of the nation’s boldest financial aid programs, Opportunity Vanderbilt, which replaced need-based loans with grants and scholarships. Our goal was to attract more and more supremely talented students to take part in our cherished undergraduate experience, regardless of their economic circumstances. Read More

    Nov 19, 2018

  • photo of the stairwell of the Engineering and Science Building

    Chancellor’s Letter: Collaborative Innovation

    Every single member of our diverse community, from the oldest alumni to the newest admitted students, contributes a vital part to our core mission. We are united by a distinct set of values. That’s why we are a university, not a poly-versity. We stand together. We are one Vanderbilt. Read More

    Sep 6, 2018

  • Chancellor’s Letter: Education Evangelists

    Chancellor’s Letter: Education Evangelists

    Beyond the shadow of a doubt, college remains the surest path to securing a good job, high-quality health care and enjoying a reasonable measure of stability for yourself and your family. Read More

    Jun 8, 2018

  • Vanderbilt University

    Chancellor’s Letter: Savoring Civility

    If Vanderbilt is to live up to its mission of training future leaders, we cannot ignore the vital roles that civility and community play in society—no matter how harried or virtual our lives become. Read More

    Feb 26, 2018

  • Vanderbilt University

    Chancellor’s Letter: Pardon Our Dust

    Learning doesn’t end after those classroom hours. In many ways, that’s when it begins. Especially now, when public dialogue is increasingly discordant, our imperative to teach and model reasoned, civil discourse from all viewpoints and perspectives is more urgent than ever. Read More

    Nov 21, 2017