Ryan Bagwell, Ballot Position No. 5

BagwellRyan Bagwell ’02 A&A/Com

Web developer
Middletown, Wis.

Read Bagwell’s official bio and position statement here. (PDF download.)

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1. Describe how you think the relationship between the Board of Trustees and the university president should function.

Trustees are charged with oversight of the university. They must be curious, inquisitive, and unafraid to demand answers and records from the president and his administration. But they should also work collaboratively to set goals that are in the best interests of the university.

2. What would you do to help heal the university community and to assist the university as it continues to recover from the Sandusky scandal?

Distrust of Penn State’s leaders is as low as it has ever been. A recent alumni association survey revealed that only 16 percent of Penn State graduates trust the Board of Trustees. Penn Staters are yearning for new leaders who will reunite our divided community—even while it continues to move forward on its own.

The single most important thing the board can to do help the university community move forward is to release the records of the Freeh investigation. Demanding that alumni “move on” without answering reasonable questions has led to the deep division within Penn State’s proud alumni community. If elected, I will immediately press for the release of those records so we can end the speculation that has stood in the way of robust recovery.

3. What, in your view, are the major fiscal challenges Penn State will face over the next three years—and how should the university address them?

While the Board of Trustees should focus its energy on reuniting the torn alumni community, it cannot ignore the other challenges that beg for its attention. Record tuition has become too expensive for even the most committed Penn Staters to afford. The board should immediately rethink the way it sets the price of a Penn State degree by providing discounts for alumni and need-based tuition credits. It should form a task force comprised of trustees and administrators to expand the university’s private loan program and lower its 6 percent interest rate. Finally, the university should set a long-term goal of providing a free education for students whose families earn less than $60,000 a year.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Anonymous  |  April 3, 2014 at 8:36 pm

    I do not like your idea of a free education. You have to have skin in the game.

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