“This volume is a companion to Ohio University in Perspective, which brought together the annual convocation addresses of President Ping from the years 1975 through 1984. Like the earlier volume, Ohio University in Perspective II provides an important window onto the world of Ohio University during the president’s second decade of service. There is no convocation address for 1987 because President Ping was very deeply involved in the work of the Colloquium on the Third Century.
“The appendix brings together two documents from the period 1985-1994 pus the president’s inaugural address. The document entitled Toward the Third Century: Issues and Choices for Ohio University grew out of a colloquium convened by the president to provide a new educational plan for the University. The Board of Trustees adopted this report in January 1988 as Educational Plan II to supplement the previous plan adopted in 1977. A second colloquium, dealing with general education, produced the report entitled ‘The Continuing Reform of General Education’ to provoke campus discussion on ways to enhance the University’s general education program. Although not adopted as a set of changes to general education, the report set an agenda for continuing discussion and debate on strategies to improve general education and to integrate its goals more fully into campus life.
“The annual convocation addresses offer a vision of what Ohio University could become, and over the nine years they encompass, that vision increasingly became shared by the academic community. This volume is presented by the Trustees of Ohio University and the Ohio University Foundation as their gift to Charles J. Ping for his nineteen years of leadership to the University.”
—Foreword by David Stewart, Provost
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During the 1950s, a group of ambitious young African Americans enrolled at Ohio University, a predominantly white school in Athens, Ohio. Years later, eighteen of them decided to share their stories, recalling the joys and challenges of living on a white campus before the civil rights era.
When Charles Ping first arrived at Ohio University in 1975, the university was experiencing a decline in student enrollment and confronting serious financial challenges. But rather than focusing on its problems, Ping instead concentrated on Ohio University’s potential. During the nineteen years that Ping served as president, he guided Ohio University in scholarship, research, and service while substantially increasing the size of the campus through the acquisition of The Ridges.