Florida State University welcomes new President Richard McCullough
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Florida State University welcomed a new president Monday.
Richard McCullough is beginning a five-year contract with FSU. He spent nearly the last decade as the vice provost for research at Harvard University.
The president is starting his term in the middle of a tropical storm and an ongoing pandemic, but he says he’s excited to get to work.
“Hurricane, a COVID outbreak,” McCullough said. “You know, it’s good to have challenges on the first day I think.”
McCullough cited the COVID pandemic as the biggest hurdle he faces as president. He said he wants to make sure the university stays within the guidelines recommended by the state of Florida while also keeping students safe.
As of yesterday FSU’s COVID dashboard showed 31 students testing positive.
With classes starting in just one week, McCullough said the university will spread out the move-in process for new students over several days to avoid a huge influx of people all at once.
He anticipates a rise in cases as students start coming back but hopes that enough people will be vaccinated and wearing masks to decrease that risk.
“I just keep saying I hope we get lucky,” McCullough said. “I hope we get lucky.”
When asked about what he’s most excited about, McCullough said he’s eager to interact with the student body.
“When I was Head of Research at Harvard, I didn’t do as much interacting with the students, and that’s really where my passion is,” he said. “I have over 40,000 to interact with here so I’m going to be pretty busy.”
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