Executive Profile: Geoffrey M. Cox, PhD
1. What is your favorite quote:
"Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself." -- John Dewey
2. Favorite non-job pastime?
Reading, especially history; cooking for my family; gardening--though I'm not very good at it!
3. What's new at Alliant International University?
We are launching new options for undergraduates aimed at students who are having trouble getting into or getting the courses they need at California's public colleges and universities due to the current state education budget situation. These new options will include a blend of online and campus-based classes designed to get students through their degree programs as quickly and efficiently as possible. Private, non-profit institutions such as Alliant are an important alternative to the public systems, and we are working to respond to the growing need for affordable, quality higher education throughout the state by offering new merit scholarships of up to $7,000.
4. How does Alliant distinguish itself?
Alliant is one of the most diverse universities in the country. We rank among the top institutions nationally in awarding doctoral degrees to minority students, and indeed we have 45,000 alumni from over 100 countries. The majority of our students are working toward professional degrees in psychology, education, business and law. We think it is critical to prepare these future professionals to work effectively across cultural and national boundaries. In addition to our six locations in California, we offer degree programs in Mexico City, Hong Kong and Tokyo.
5. What are important lessons learned during your career?
I've been involved in higher education as a student, teacher and administrator for nearly 40 years. I am more convinced than ever that the variety of colleges and universities we have in the United States is an important strength of our country. We don't try to make one size fit everyone--there are small colleges and big universities; public, private, and for-profit institutions; and options for study ranging from liberal arts to technical training. This variety is hard to explain to the public and to politicians, but we need to protect it. There is great demand these days for more accountability in higher education, especially given its cost. That's appropriate, but higher education is not an assembly line. We need to make sure that regulations do not eliminate the opportunities for experimentation and diversity. The U.S. remains the world leader in higher education, but as in other fields, we can lose that position of leadership if we are not careful.
6. What do you find exciting about San Diego?
I'm very impressed by the strong public spirit in San Diego. There is a wonderful synergy among the business community, educational institutions, cultural institutions, the military, local government, etc. I always have the sense that people are pulling together to make San Diego the best possible place to live and work. I'm inspired by the deep pride people take their community.
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