Chancellor Carol Folt says the University needs to adapt to the changing environment brought by an educational revolution.
Folt spoke at UNC’s Kenan-Flagler Business School Monday night in the second installment of the Dean Speaker’s series. Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Jim Dean, former dean of the business school, scheduled Folt to speak in May before she even started at UNC.
“We wanted a senior woman that could talk about what it took to be successful,” Dean said. “She has attained the same level of success as previous speakers, but she is one of our own.”
Folt said higher education has undergone three revolutions in the past century. She said the first occurred after World War I, when the United States wanted campuses to grow much larger. The second took place after World War II.
“Americans began to link the people who did the research directly to the education of the next generation,” she said. “When we embedded research in the universities, we set in motion innovation.”
And now the country is beginning its third revolution, for which Folt said she is prepared.
“Change comes naturally to me,” she said. “I certainly wouldn’t have flourished if I wanted to keep doing it the same way.”
Folt said the needs and demographic of the state are shifting.
“We have to work hard to increase our diversity and match the nation in that way,” she said.