President's Message


President Diacon shares information about the university’s strategic plan.

Dear Kent State University Students, Faculty and Staff,

Every day, I marvel at how beautiful all our campuses look, and I regularly count myself fortunate to work at such an attractive place. Still, it is the hard-working and dedicated faculty and staff who answer the call every day in support of our incredible students who make the Kent State system such a welcoming and effective place to live and learn.

As we move forward from the pandemic with a "new normal," we can celebrate many recent successes. Because of all you have done, we have continued to thrive even during the most difficult of circumstances. Because our students displayed grit and flexibility, they weathered an unprecedented crisis with fortitude and grace. Because of the support of our faculty and staff, students continued their studies, and more than 10,000 have earned their degrees since the pandemic began.

This is a tribute to our overriding Students First philosophy and the centrality of issues regarding the health and well-being of our students.

Flashes continue to take care of one another, and we continue to create new successes — together. We continue to generate new knowledge and have earned the coveted R1 research designation, a distinction of excellence only reserved for elite research institutions. We have been named the best university in the United States for global education, and we have been recognized most recently as a most promising place to work in America for professionals in student affairs. We’ve also been named one of the top places to work in all of Ohio.

At Kent State, we are an institution committed to exploring the hardest, most vexing issues of the day. And, because of our history, we are committed to doing so in a spirit of inquiry that seeks to understand and welcome all viewpoints in a spirited civil discourse. We know at Kent State the dangers of polarization, and we have lived through more than 50 years of pain, anger and despair when disagreement turned suddenly to violence. We are Kent State, and our history and mission demand that we lead by example the next phase of discussion and debate over abortion in America.

As a university, we strive for equity and belonging, not just on holidays, but every day of the year, as we work toward realizing the inalienable rights that were promised to all Americans at the founding of this country. 

Together we are making a real difference.