As Executive Chairman of the Minerva Institute, Bob Kerrey directs philanthropic outreach and fundraising in support of student scholarships, as well as faculty and student research initiatives. Prior to joining Minerva, Kerrey served as President of the New School in New York City. While there, he dramatically increased the endowment from $94 million to $206 million. In addition, Kerrey oversaw the development of multiple new academic programs, an enrollment increase of 44%, and a more than twofold increase in faculty positions.
Kerrey also served as both a U.S. Senator and Governor for Nebraska, and is a decorated Navy SEAL officer, having been awarded the Medal of Honor.
It is clear that American higher education is in need of change. Even the best universities are failing to prepare students adequately for life after graduation — particularly in today’s globalized context — while often saddling them with enormous debt. Moreover, the vast majority of the brightest students in the world are not even able to attend these top-tier institutions because of admissions quotas, legacy policies, and the significant financial need of many students, especially those from outside the U.S.
As a result, we are missing the opportunity to effectively educate vast numbers of highly qualified students, many of whom demonstrate tremendous empathy, ambition, and resilience — the very qualities needed for leadership and problem solving on the world stage.
Kerrey will discuss how we can challenge the status quo in higher education today, including visionary new approaches that help ensure we are providing the best education possible, at an affordable cost, to the top students around the world.
Medal of Honor: Oral Histories, 2011
Election Night Speech, 2012
How Big Money Affects Politics, Free Speech People, 2014
Interview with Senator Bob Kerrey, Audible, 2015