Photo by Matthew Horning

President Sands, surrounded by former CSU presidents, addresses the audience at his investiture.


Oct. 29, 2018

Sands introduced as the seventh president of Cleveland State

Harlan M. Sands stressed his vision for Cleveland State University to become a beacon institution when he officially became the seventh president of the university on Oct. 2.

Taking place during a ceremony that occurred before 700 students, faculty and local government dignitaries, the investiture marked the official beginning of Sands’ presidency following his appointment on June 1, 2018.

As President Sands began his speech, he first acknowledged his parents, siblings, his wife Lynn and sons Samson and A.J.
In his remarks to the assembled crowd, Sands emphasized that Cleveland State will serve the Northeast Ohio community.

“Great cities need great universities, and Cleveland is a great city,” he said. “Together, we will build a best-in-class research and teaching university known for its groundbreaking cradle-to-career programs that expand the boundaries of academic creativity and innovation.”

Sands also stressed his commitment to building the university’s unique position as a nationally recognized public urban research university.

“Together we will expand our reach as both an anchor and beacon, working to grow our already impressive brand,” he said. “Together we will continue to serve our community with our unique mix of high-quality, affordable and accessible academic programs and transform lives.”

Since he took office the main theme of Sands’ tenure is to move the university, “forward together.”

“As we build our CSU of tomorrow, it is clear that our future will be defined, no surprise, by our people. Together WE will define our own future and not let the future define us,” he said. “Together we will nurture and grow the incredible bond between our faculty, staff and students. That’s what makes CSU so special, let’s dream big together.”

Honored guests included Cleveland mayor, Frank Jackson and Cleveland State alumnus; Cuyahoga County executive, Armond Budish; Mark B. Rosenberg, Ph.D, president of Florida International University (FIU); and former Cleveland State presidents Michael Schwartz, Ph.D. and Ronald Berkman, Ph.D.

Samia Shasheen, the president of the Student Government Association, and FIU President Rosenberg stressed cooperation and vision in their opening remarks.

“On behalf of the entire student body of Cleveland State University, it is my privilege, and my honor to congratulate Mr. Harlan M. Sands,” Shaheen said. “We look forward to working with you.”

“In Harlan Sands, you have someone who can rekindle the belief in higher education,” Rosenberg said. “Cleveland State is an institution, a beacon of good, and a sanctuary to all who call themselves students. It’s moments like these we get to pause and revitalize this institution.”

Following the ceremony, Cleveland State faculty, led by Sands, processed to the student center where the students, the faculty and guests were able to congratulate and welcome Sands personally to Cleveland State.


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