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09/09/2011 07:00:00

From the President's Outbox: A Message from Jean-Lou Chameau

On Sunday, our nation will mark the 10th anniversary of the tragic events of 9/11.

I was reflecting on this milestone, and on the turbulent character of this past decade, when I heard an interview with columnist Tom Friedman on the challenges facing the U.S. right now.  He made some recommendations for where we should go from here, and I was struck by two things:

First, he said the country doesn't just need more education; we need better education, "education that focuses on creativity and starting things."  Second, Friedman encourages us to discover ways to invent ourselves out of where we are now.  We need more innovation, more investment in science and technology, and more partnerships in research.

At Caltech, we focus on developing creative minds, we drive innovation, and we break through the existing boundaries of science and technology.  In other words, we embody Friedman's prescription for our country, and what we know and do is vital to its future.

It is a testament to the strength—and the relevance—of Caltech's mission that we have emerged from the volatility of the past decade in a stable and strong position.  As we mark this significant anniversary, let us begin the new academic year with a renewed commitment to our mission--with optimism, courage, and an eye toward the future.

Yours in discovery,

Jean-Lou

Written by Jean-Lou Chameau