Message from the President

Dear Golden Flashes Family –

First and foremost, my hope is that this message finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy. During these unprecedented times, Kent State’s administration has been working tirelessly to protect our entire Golden Flash community. With eight campuses, hundreds of study abroad programs, and wide array of community-based internships and clinicals, there have been many details to manage. But, without hesitation, every decision we’ve made has been to protect the health of our students and employees. As you know, at Kent State, Flashes take care of Flashes.

In that spirit, I write to you today with an opportunity to help us support our students who are unexpectedly finding themselves in financial need as the result of the pandemic. Along with the uncertainty we are all facing, students and families are dealing with unexpected costs including travel, food and housing, technology needs and, in some cases, lost wages of the student and parents. A gift to the Pay it Flash Forward Emergency Fund will help our most vulnerable students stay on track for graduation.

Across our campuses, we are doing everything in our control to offer a safe and productive path for our students to successfully complete their semester. We ceased face-to-face classes on the evening of March 10 and were able to transfer 9,279 courses to remote instruction by March 16. Though our faculty and staff have been working remotely since March 16, the services offered to our students have remained robust, proactive and flexible. We’ve hosted Facebook Live Q&A sessions, maintained our One Stop for Student Services to answer student and family questions, and moved 6,400 students out of the residence halls in less than two weeks, with refunds coming soon.

In addition to caring for our students and employees, Golden Flashes have been helping the communities we serve as well. Several of our Nursing and Allied Health programs, as well as faculty in the College of Public Health, have provided campus lab supplies, biosafety suits and protective equipment to local hospitals during this time of need. Our food pantries have offered meals to neighbors in need. And though our College of Podiatric Medicine has also moved to remote instruction, as future medical professionals, students are participating in this public health crisis in ways that benefit their medical education and the world around them.

I can proudly say that this community has pulled together in nearly every way possible to ensure that our talented and diligent students can stay healthy as well as on track to earn their degrees. Though we must delay commencement this year, rest assured, those eligible to graduate will earn their diplomas. Students will have earned the accolades coming their way, and I look forward to congratulating them in person at a future date.

Finally, I want to acknowledge our Kent State alumni around the world who are serving on the front lines of this global crisis. From health care professionals and first responders, to retailers and grocers, to media professionals and more, Golden Flashes are making this world better in meaningful ways. Please know how proud we are of your service.

On behalf of everyone across our Kent State campuses, I wish you safety, health and some moments of peace.


Todd Diacon


July 2019 Message from the President

Dear Members of the Kent State University Alumni Family,

As I proudly assume leadership of Kent State as its 13th president, I am honored and humbled to lead this great university. I am also filled with excitement and anticipation for what is the beginning of a new era built on a renewed commitment to the highest levels of access and affordability while providing a world-class education.

In my role as executive vice president and provost, I have witnessed the exemplary work and dedication of our special Kent State community. My commitment to you today is to strengthen our intense focus on student success, as well as research and academic excellence.

Kent State is a university with unmatched potential for meaningful impact in the state of Ohio and beyond. We are one of the largest university systems in the nation with world-class faculty, nationally respected programs and students who exhibit the sheer grit and determination to make a difference in our global society.

Thanks to all of you, we are a university on the rise. With your support, we have successfully advanced Kent State's position as a top-tier public research university. Our work has resulted in record retention rates, a dramatic rise in graduation rates and a record number of graduates who earned their baccalaureate degrees. In fact, we awarded more than 10,000 degrees last year – more than the entire enrollment of several Northeast Ohio colleges. And this fall, we will announce great news of dramatic increases in our research funding. As Kent State rises higher, so does the value of your degree. 

Our impressive accomplishments are too numerous to list here – from our students garnering two prestigious Goldwater Scholarships to our Ambassador Crawford College of Business and Entrepreneurship investment team winning national honors to WKSU being named the Best Newsroom in Ohio for a second consecutive year. I owe each of our students, faculty, staff and alumni a debt of gratitude. It would have been impossible to reach these milestones without the contributions of all of you.

It will take our continued efforts, working together, to elevate this fine institution to its rightful place as a national powerhouse and vital partner in Ohio's growth and success.

I hope to see you back on campus soon!

Todd Diacon