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¥ fp V ~ UNIVERSITY or KENTUCKY D|°Bam Tour Conversations
. ‘ ‘ A A number of us recently completed what we called "The Dream Tour’” — a whirlwind.
av 1,600-mile, eight—day tour through 20 Kentucky communities.
‘ Le i The idea was a simple one: demonstrate to the people of Kentucky the importance of
‘ .. .. " / UK in helping our state and our children realize their dreams.
* . .V ... .. ‘ I · · · ·
g · I As IS often the case, though, I found out that when you start engaging in conversations
V"` A _ with people across the state, you leam as much as you teach.
W"" T In Northern Kentucky, for example, I learned about how our UK Gluck Equine Re-
, search Center was able to quickly respond to a virus outbreak at Turfway Park before its big
Lane’s End race, giving the track what it needed to contain the virus and hold the race as
In Western Kentucky we heard Cheyenne Albro, director of the Pennyrile Narcotics Task Force, talk
about the HEEL Program, Health Education through Extension Leadership, which has brought together lo-
cal enforcement and social services agencies with six UK colleges to aggressively attack the 1nethamphet—
amine problem, especially its effect on children. According to a survey recently released by the National
Association of Counties, Kentucky is one of five states in which meth arrests have doubled in the last three
In Eastern Kentucky, we listened intently to a young woman who is a student at the Center of Excel-
, lence for Rural Health in Hazard. She is just one representative of the high achieving students in Eastern
I Kentucky. She’s one more example of how Kentucky children can compete with anyone — if they`re given
I the chance.
In South Central Kentucky, we met bright, young students at the Somerset Community and Teclmical
` College who want to attend UK and, who along with their teachers and others, have good ideas about how
we can collaborate more with Somerset Community College to make that community even stronger.
And on the bus, while traversing the state. I spent time talking to — and listening to — many of our
deans, who are excited about educating young people and about reaching out into the state to make it an
even better place to live.
As part of that process, we’1l soon be unveiling a program called "The Commonwealth C ollaboratives"
— a series of initiatives where our senior research professors are tackling some of Kentucky`s most intrac-
table problems, from raising math and science scores at the middle school level to addressing dreaded
diseases such as cancer and heart disease that afflict far too many of our people.
· The simple fact is that I learn more and more each day that we are not only the University of Kentucky.
We’re the University for Kentucky. That carries with it a special obligation — an obligation to do all we can
to be a catalyst for creating a new Commonwealth, a state that is healthier, more prosperous and ready to
help its children successfully meet the challenges of a complex and changing 21st century world.
A On "The Dream Tour," we spent time communicating with our alumni and friends about what we’re
doing to change Kentucky for the better. At the same time, we got to hear how much people want their
University — the University of Kentucky — to engage with the state and to lead.
The stories we heard and the compelling examples we saw are a foundation for our commitment and
resolve as we Come back home to prepare for another school year. Every day, at UK, we`ll be working to help
our state and our children make their dreams come true.
I hope you will stay with us throughout the year by visiting our online resources and, as a member of the
UK Alumni Association, through the Kemucky Alumni magazine as our faculty, undergraduate, graduate and
professional students continue to experience success at your alma mater.
President Lee T. Todd Jr.
KENTUCKY ALUMNI 3