Jump to content
  • USF Bulls fans join us at The Bulls Pen

    It's simple, free and connects you to other South Florida Bulls fans!

  • Members do not see this ad, Register

USF President Presides Over Growth Spurts


ChiTownBull

Recommended Posts


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  5,691
  • Reputation:   1
  • Days Won:  0
  • Joined:  12/27/2001

http://southshore2.tbo.com/content/2008/jul/15/usf-president-presides-over-growth-spurts/

By JOE O'NEILL | South Shore News

Published: July 15, 2008

Judy Genshaft, provost and vice president for academic affairs at the State University of New York at Albany, knew what she wanted when she applied for the presidency of the University of South Florida in 1999.

A major research university in an anti-ivory tower, urban environment. A place young enough  40-something  to still be making its mark. A place where community synergy and economic partnership could be more than idealistic aspirations or trendy buzz words.

Then throw in the unique, semi-tropical locale that is the Tampa Bay region.

Nine years later, she's reflectively buoyant and no less optimistic. She has presided over unparalleled growth in one of the largest universities (45,000 students) in the country. The budget now approaches $2 billion annually. Sponsored research tops $300 million, second in Florida.

USF used to look like an industrial park. Now, adorned in bougainvillea and dotted with recent and ongoing construction, it looks like the sort of place where  literally  a third of the students will reside within five years.

USF, which had converted "commuter school" into a local pejorative, used to be dubiously dubbed "the biggest school in the country without a football team." Now it's a Big East Conference stalwart, and a football season that doesn't end with a bowl game is a major disappointment.

As befitting one whose university has a $3 billion economic impact on the region, Genshaft, 60, has become an economic-development dynamo since her formal appointment in July 2000. She currently chairs the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce and is the immediate past chair of the Tampa Bay Partnership. She's a member of the Florida High Tech Corridor and the Florida Council of 100 and was named Tampa Bay Businesswoman of the Year by the Tampa Bay Business Journal in 2007.

Along the way, the Canton, Ohio, native has weathered the Sami al-Arian firestorm and the Byrd Center flap and forges on fighting for regional-campus, best-case scenarios and adjusting on the fly to state budget roulette.

She took some time recently to muse on the USF experience, one that began, ironically, with a misplaced welcome mat.

That's because it was in front of the Lifsey House, the president's official, 9,000-square-foot, contemporary residence near the main entrance of the Tampa campus. Lifsey, with all of its glass, Pentagon-like corridors and Graphicstudio ambience, was well suited for receptions.

But it was ill-suited for real-world living. Especially if that world were inhabited by family members. This one was: Genshaft and her husband, Steven Greenbaum, and their adopted sons, Bryan, then 3, and Joel, then 6. The immediate "neighborhood" included Fowler Avenue and the next-door Sam and Martha Gibbons Alumni Center.

She stayed a month – and then moved the family into more traditional digs in nearby Tampa Palms.

"It was not a house for kids," diplomatically recalls Genshaft. "I wanted a regular house in a regular neighborhood with playmates for our children." While USF hosts some 70 events a year at Lifsey  and Genshaft loves playing the hostess card  the president doesn't so much as keep a wardrobe change there.

Genshaft Outtakes

"As a public university, our responsibility is to be part of the growth of the economy, now centered in cities."

"We are a large, major research institution; being in the Tampa Bay area makes it extra special."

The Tampa Bay region: "This is an area that you just have to see for yourself. Tampa is a city with character – from Bayshore Boulevard to Ybor City. If you're re-locating with kids, take them to Busch Gardens right away. And then you have to see the city of St. Petersburg and visit the beaches."

Regional role of USF: "Education doesn't know about bridges or bad roads."

Role of USF's regional campuses: "Let them be all they can be. We want students to have an on-campus experience."

Her favorite day is Wednesday; it's the day she maxes out on personal contact with on-campus constituencies. It begins with meetings with senior vice presidents and other administrators. It will include lunch with a dozen or more graduate and undergraduate students. Later, there's a drop-in session with the faculty senate.

Leadership style: "I'm a collaborative leader. The key is being willing to listen. But I can make the tough decisions. If I believe in something, I'm a great fundraiser."

Her psychology (doctorate in counseling psychology from Kent State University) background: "It's helpful. I like to work with  not against the system. A lot of leadership is the power of persuasion  getting people on board. A lot of group dynamics."

On being the only female president in the 11-institution State University System of Florida: "I don't perceive it as a problem. I think people treat you the way you behave."

On being a traditional president  rooted in academe  not a politician hired for influential contacts and fundraising acumen: "I'm still the majority model. I've worked my way up through the ranks. And I wouldn't trade that background for anything."

Value of high-profile intercollegiate athletics: "It's very important to a major institution. It's a huge part of the school atmosphere. Sports is really the front porch to the university. It brings out spirit and pride. And what people sometimes forget or don't know is that no instructional money goes into athletics. It's self-generated."

On balancing work and family: "You really don't balance it. Different times of the year are heavier or lighter and you adjust accordingly. It's prioritizing, not balancing. I'm fortunate to have a supportive family."

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  1,524
  • Reputation:   9
  • Days Won:  1
  • Joined:  02/20/2008

I wish she understood the fact that having an OCS makes school spirit and atmosphere even better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  8,158
  • Reputation:   107
  • Days Won:  3
  • Joined:  02/11/2004

I wish she understood the fact that having an OCS makes school spirit and atmosphere even better.

That whole article touting the jillions and billions of things that have improved at USF in the past 9 years, and people whine about an OCS?

I'll never understand some fans.  Ever.

By the way, it's not a "fact".  Ask Buffalo or Duke how their Football OCS improves school spirit and atmosphere when they go 0-11 each year.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  1,524
  • Reputation:   9
  • Days Won:  1
  • Joined:  02/20/2008

Yes but when you have a football team that is making some noise and doing great and a school that has grown and matured over the past years, dont you think that an OCS would help put us over the edge in terms of school spirit? Im not saying it would make USF have the best school spirit, Im just saying it would help. Think about it, on gamedays people would be tailgating and walking around campus and it would give it a more traditional feel like most established programs. So ease up a little there buddy, you dont have to agree with what every fan says, Im just stating my personal opinion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  21,462
  • Reputation:   938
  • Days Won:  10
  • Joined:  01/02/2007

I would put more food on the campus from various vendors.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  760
  • Reputation:   0
  • Days Won:  0
  • Joined:  02/07/2008

She has always said she wants an OCS, but for some reason $200 million or so just doesn't show up on her doorstep. We will get one when we are ready.

I agree with the food comment. Stop giving Aramark a strangle hold on our food choices. Atleast the new MC will have Moes and Beef's.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  3,696
  • Reputation:   250
  • Days Won:  2
  • Joined:  09/08/2004

Yes but when you have a football team that is making some noise and doing great and a school that has grown and matured over the past years, dont you think that an OCS would help put us over the edge in terms of school spirit? Im not saying it would make USF have the best school spirit, Im just saying it would help. Think about it, on gamedays people would be tailgating and walking around campus and it would give it a more traditional feel like most established programs. So ease up a little there buddy, you dont have to agree with what every fan says, Im just stating my personal opinion.

It will happen.   Just takes time to do it the right way.   The program hasn't done anything with a quick fix, so no need to start now.   There is a reason there is an out clause in our agreement with Ray Jay.

As fans all we can do is donate, go to the games and encourage others to buys tickets and go to the games.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  6,479
  • Reputation:   1,906
  • Days Won:  35
  • Joined:  02/02/2005

Here is the thing that everyone has to remember with regards to an OCS; Last season was the first time ever that the students came out en masse in order to support the football team. For the 4 or 5 years prior to that, the student section was sparsely filled, and the ones that were there tended to be entirely frats and sororities that would leave at halftime to go pursue other Saturday Night endeavors. At the present time, there are still not a lot of students that live on campus. Not having an OCS does not have that much of an effect on student attendance at games. As long as we keep giving away all of the 12,501 student tickets, then the spirit factor will be a non-issue.

Another thing that people have to remember is that we are in a transitionary period. We are turning numerous people on to USF football, but not all of them are die-hards like those on these boards. I will go anywhere, at any time to see the Bulls play, but not everyone else shares that fervor. There are most likely a lot of fans who attend the games not only because USF is competitive, but also because they play in a world class facility. Take away that element, and I bet you lose quite a few casual fans. Additionally, why not allow the fan base to grow and determine what demand will be like for tickets over the long haul so that we can build an appropraitely sized OCS, when the time is right.

We have seen a programs meteroic rise from non-existent to BCS (and even National Title) contender in just 12 short years. We have trusted those in power to make the right decisions along the way and, for the most part, they have. Why can't we all trust the decisions that they make with regard to an OCS? When the timing is right (and there are a TON of factors that go into the equation), I am sure the powers-that-be will make and OCS a reality. In the meantime, lets all sit back and relax in our padded seats with their fancy cup holders, then take a few minutes to cool off in the Club Section, celebrate the fact that we do not have to wait 30 minutes to go to the bathroom or get a beer, relish the prospect of being be able to get out of the parking lot following a game in short time, and continue to pull in excellent recruits who are in awe of being able to play college football in an NFL stadium. I know it is a tough reality, but I think we will all survive for the time being.  ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  1,911
  • Reputation:   0
  • Days Won:  0
  • Joined:  09/26/2005

I was recently told by a high ranking person at USF "...don't want [an OCS] what? should we spend 40 million to get what UCF got? We have a lot of other things we need worse."

I wouldnt expect a stadium for a long while.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • Group:  Member
  • Topic Count:  0
  • Content Count:  1,251
  • Reputation:   7
  • Days Won:  0
  • Joined:  08/21/2007

i don't want an on campus stadium until our overall campus image improves.....

they need to tear all those old ugly buildings down......like the old ROTC building and the social sciences building.....they need to put more trees up and give a little more life to our campus........the marshall center and the new 7 story tower dorms are great starts......i don't want people coming to our home football games and making fun of our campus.....that would set me off....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Tell a friend

    Love TheBullsPen.com? Tell a friend!
  • South Florida Fight Song

     

  • usf-logo2.jpg
    Opponent Message Boards
    "Let them know you're from The Bulls Pen"

    Recommend one

     

    vs Bethune (8/31)

    at Alabama (9/7)  
    TideFans (I)
    TDAlabama (I)

    at So. Miss (9/14)

    vs Miami (9/21)
    Canes Insight (I)
    Miami-Hurricanes (I)

    at Tulane (09/28)
    Ye Olde Green wave (I)

    vs. Memphis (10/11)
    Tigers' Lair (R)

    vs. UAB (10/19) 
    Blazer Talk (CSN)

    at FAU (11/1)
    The Owl's Nest (I)

    vs Navy (11/9)

    at Charlotte (11/16)
    Niner Nation (I)

    at Rice (11/30) 

  • Quotes

    Valiant efforts are for losers, moral victories are for losers. That’s what losers say. Winners win.

    Alex Golesh  

  • Recent Achievements

    • USF444 earned a badge
      Reacting Well
    • at12 earned a badge
      Week One Done
    • JJ81 earned a badge
      One Month Later
    • bullz97 earned a badge
      Reacting Well
    • cp74 earned a badge
      Week One Done
  • Popular Contributors

    1. 1
      Triple B
      Triple B
      51
    2. 2
      BULLSHTR
      BULLSHTR
      48
    3. 3
      Cat941
      Cat941
      42
    4. 4
      Rocky Style
      Rocky Style
      39
    5. 5
      USF_Bullsharks
      USF_Bullsharks
      20
  • Quotes

    Act like you’ve been there before. Turns out, for many of us, we haven’t been there before.

    Alex Golesh  

×
×
  • Create New...