Skip to Main Content

Apply Now to the University of Wyoming apply now

With Plans in Place, UW is Ready to Reach New Heights

January 24, 2022
head photo of a man

By Ed Seidel 

In my last president’s message in the September 2021 issue of UWyo Magazine, I provided some details of my administration’s plan to make the University of Wyoming a best-in-class, 21st century land-grant university true to its Wyoming roots. I’m delighted to report that UW’s Board of Trustees, Gov. Mark Gordon and others have endorsed key components of this plan, setting the stage for changes that will help the university achieve its full potential even during a time of uncertain state revenues.

In this issue of the magazine, you’ll read more about the new initiatives I mentioned previously: the Wyoming Innovation Partnership with the state’s community colleges; the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation; the Wyoming Outdoor Recreation, Tourism and Hospitality (WORTH) Center; and our new School of Computing. I’m excited that the governor has allocated federal American Rescue Plan funding to help launch these interrelated programs, which will work in concert to also achieve the objectives of UW’s existing Tier-1 Engineering Initiative and Top-Tier Science Initiative.

In this issue, you can also learn more about our academic reorganization plan approved in November by the Board of Trustees. It not only reallocates funding to help support the new initiatives, but also positions the university to reduce administrative overhead; better serve students; and organize better for research competitiveness and corporate partnerships. We are now beginning a strategic planning process to assure that, as the restructuring unfolds over the next year and a half, the changes will be implemented in a way that maximizes opportunities while avoiding unintended consequences.

While I couldn’t be more optimistic about where these changes will take us, we all recognize that, in many respects, our work is just beginning. We have created a strong framework to move the university forward, and now we must execute the plans. We’ll only be successful through the combined efforts of our faculty, staff, students, alumni, elected leaders, private and public partners, and other supporters.

Change is often difficult, so it’s reasonable to expect that we’ll encounter some bumps along the new path we’ve chosen. But I’m confident that we’re headed in the right direction, and that we’ll navigate through any issues if we keep in mind the outcomes we all desire.

First and foremost, we are intent upon improving the experiences and preparation of UW’s students. For example, the School of Computing and the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation are about infusing digital literacy, computing savvy and an entrepreneurial mindset across all of our academic programs. We want our graduates to possess the skills to succeed in an increasingly complex global marketplace—and to become leaders and innovators right here in Wyoming to help grow and diversify the state’s economy. And it’s not just about the IT sector—innovation and computing are needed in every market, from agriculture and energy to tourism and hospitality!

In addition to helping build a workforce to support existing and new business in the state, we also aim for the university to play a larger role as an innovation engine for the state’s economy—supporting and training entrepreneurs and new business startups, growing research, and enhancing technology transfer and commercialization. For example, WORTH has tremendous potential to fulfill the existing needs of the state’s second-largest economic sector while helping private and public entities expand into new business opportunities related to outdoor recreation, tourism and hospitality. Similar opportunities exist in biotechnology and blockchain, as well as data science, artificial intelligence and their applications to all other fields.

As I’ve noted previously, we’ll be working hard to generate new and enhanced revenue sources from federal agencies, corporate partners and others. That will be essential to achieve our ambition of moving from R2 to R1 status in the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. More importantly, it will help us give students the 21st century education they need and deserve; attract the very best faculty and staff members; conduct research to tackle the grand challenges facing Wyoming and world; and better serve the people, communities and industries of the state.

We truly appreciate the extensive input and interest from UW’s various stakeholders that has helped establish the roadmap endorsed by the Board of Trustees, the governor and others. Now, please join us as we move forward to make Wyoming’s university the best it can be. 

Ed Seidel is the 28th president of the University of Wyoming.

1000 E. University Ave. Laramie, WY 82071
UW Operators (307) 766-1121 | Contact Us | Download Adobe Reader

Accreditation | Virtual Tour | Emergency Preparedness | Employment at UW | Privacy Policy | Harassment & Discrimination | Accessibility Accessibility information icon