U.S. Sen. Dr. Ben Sasse, a Nebraska Republican, will become president of the University of Florida (UF), effective early 2023. Sasse’s selection and candidacy was surrounded by student protests, controversy, and a faculty vote of no-confidence.
UF’s Board of Trustees unanimously voted to appoint Sasse, who will become the school’s 13th president, pending ratification by the Florida Board of Governors. Sasse was the sole finalist for the role.
“Education properly understood isn’t exclusively or even primarily about transmitting information,” Sasse said. “Education is about learning how to humbly and meaningfully engage with new ideas. We want Gators to engage ideas. I want our students to be challenged and to rejoice in the challenge. We want Gators to go out and serve Florida and the world. Let’s go out and build something great together.”
Sasse is a former college president and academic, having led Midland University and having been a faculty member at the University of Texas at Austin.
“Ben Sasse is a dynamic and forward-thinking leader, and an accomplished academic, university administrator and legislator,” said Dr. Ted Mitchell, president of the American Council on Education (ACE). “Dr. Sasse is very well-equipped to take the helm and guide the University of Florida and its diverse community through these turbulent and challenging times for American higher education. I appreciate his commitment to serving the University of Florida and dedication to improving the lives of its students. I look forward to working with Dr. Sasse on the many important issues facing all of our institutions and students.”
Sasse holds a Ph.D. in history from Yale University and a Bachelor of Arts from Harvard University.