President's Corner

What I'm Up To Paul LeBlanc

reading
I'm reading:

Just finished Esi Edugyan’s 2018 novel Washington Black. Starting on a slave plantation in Barbados, it is a picaresque novel that has elements of Jules Verne, Moby DickFrankenstein, and Colson Whitehead’s Underground Railroad. Yes, it strains credulity and there are moments of “huh?”, but I loved it (disclosure: I was in the minority among my fellow book club members) and the first third is a searing depiction of slavery. It’s audacious, sprawling (from Barbados to the Arctic to London to Africa), and the writing, especially about nature, luminous.

watching
I'm watching:

A soap opera. Yes, I’d like to pretend it’s something else, but we are 31 episodes into the Australian drama A Place Called Home and we are so, so addicted. Like “It’s  AM, but can’t we watch just one more episode?” addicted. Despite all the secrets, cliff hangers, intrigue, and “did that just happen?” moments, the core ingredients of any good soap opera, APCH has superb acting, real heft in terms of subject matter (including homophobia, anti-Semitism, sexual assault, and class), touches of our beloved Downton Abbey, and great cars. Beware. If you start, you won’t stop.

listening
I'm listening to:

There is a lovely piece played in a scene from A Place Called Home that I tracked down. It’s Erik Satie’s 3 Gymnopédies: Gymnopédie No. 1, played by the wonderful pianist Klára Körmendi. Satie composed this piece in 1888 and it was considered avant-garde and anti-Romantic. It’s minimalism and bit of dissonance sound fresh and contemporary to my ears and while not a huge Classical music fan, I’ve fallen in love with the Körmendi playlist on Spotify. When you need an alternative to hours of Cardi B.

tweeting
I'm tweeting at @snhuprez:

A President's Reflections

Pop Picks – March 28, 2019

Posted on March 28, 2019

March 28, 2019 What I’m listening to:  There is a lovely piece played in a scene from A Place Called Home that I tracked down. It’s Erik Satie’s 3 Gymnopédies: Gymnopédie No. 1, played by the wonderful pianist Klára Körmendi. Satie composed this piece in 1888 and it was considered avant-garde and anti-Romantic. It’s minimalism and bit of dissonance sound […]

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A President's Reflections

What Gets Left Out and What Stays In: Reflections on Storytelling

Posted on March 28, 2019

When reporters reach out and tell us they are doing a story about SNHU, we always open our doors, welcome them in, and give them as much accurate information as we can. While not everyone agrees with me that we should do so (call it basic mistrust of the media), I have always felt that […]

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Pop Picks

Pop Picks – February 11, 2019

Posted on February 11, 2019

February 11, 2019 What I’m listening to: Raphael Saadiq has been around for quite a while, as a musician, writer, and producer. He’s new to me and I love his old school R&B sound. Like Leon Bridges, he brings a contemporary freshness to the genre, sounding like a young Stevie Wonder (listen to “You’re The One That I […]

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A President's Reflections

Confronting Racism, Past and Present

Posted on February 11, 2019

Our Board of Trustees meets in mid-winter for what we have called a “learning retreat,” going with my leadership team to a place where we can expand our thinking, to learn from some other area of work or industry, and to engage with thinkers and doers in other fields. One year it was Washington, D.C., […]

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A President's Reflections

The Government Shutdown and Our SNHU Community

Posted on January 15, 2019

As the shutdown of the federal government continues with no immediate end in sight, we want to make sure we are doing all we can to support any of our students, faculty, and staff that may be impacted. We have had some inquiries and questions and because no one item stands out, it’s hard to give […]

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Pop Picks

Pop Picks – January 3, 2019

Posted on January 3, 2019

January 3, 2019 What I’m listening to: My listening choices usually refer to music, but this time I’m going with Malcolm Gladwell’s Revisionist History podcast on genius and the song Hallelujah. It tells the story of Leonard Cohen’s much-covered song Hallelujah and uses it as a lens on kinds of genius and creativity. Along the way, he brings in Picasso and […]

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A President's Reflections

A Look Back at 2018: A Record-Breaking Year at SNHU

Posted on December 19, 2018

2018 was a record-breaking year for SNHU. Along the way, we passed several impressive milestones, including hitting the 100,000 mark for both current students and alumni, opening four additional sites in Africa and the Middle East to expand access to education for more refugee learners worldwide, and hosting the University’s largest Commencement to date — […]

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A President's Reflections

Our Single Most Important Fight

Posted on December 4, 2018

I’m back from my travels in New Zealand and Australia and while it was amazing and often gorgeous (and we saw lots of great wildlife), I was disheartened by the constant drumbeat of “But climate change is….” Then fill in the blank. Shrinking habitats and declining numbers of species, bleached coral reefs, forests dying off, […]

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Pop Picks

Pop Picks – December 4, 2018

Posted on December 4, 2018

December 4, 2018 What I’m listening to: Spending a week in New Zealand, we had endless laughs listening to the Kiwi band, Flight of the Conchords. Lots of comedic bands are funny, but the music is only okay or worse. These guys are funny – hysterical really – and the music is great. They have an uncanny ability to […]

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A President's Reflections

Unveiling SNHU’s 2018-2023 Strategic Plan

Posted on October 16, 2018

Strategic planning efforts in higher education usually elicit resigned eye rolling from those who have seen strategic planning as a form of participatory theater, with lots of stakeholders involved and endless meetings and a product that has something for everyone and thus little focus or use. Those plans often sit on a shelf gathering dust […]

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