UM students react to the State of the U

UM President Julio Frenk fielded questions from the audience as part of his State of the U address. Photo: TJ Lievonen/University of Miami
By Ashley A. Williams, Amanda M. Perez and Janette Neuwahl Tannen

UM President Julio Frenk fielded questions from the audience as part of his State of the U address. Photo: TJ Lievonen/University of Miami

UM students react to the State of the U

By Ashley A. Williams, Amanda M. Perez and Janette Neuwahl Tannen
Students attending Monday night's State of the U address by UM President Julio Frenk offer their assessment of the message delivered.

After listening to University of Miami President Julio Frenk deliver his State of the U address Monday evening, students reacted to the remarks and the University’s efforts to be one of the most impactful universities in the world as it marches toward its centennial in 2025.

Here is what they had to say: 

“The messages that resonated most with me were the parts about the future. As a second year graduate student it made me feel like my future is boundless. It made me feel confident about my post-graduate plans.” 
Yang Yeu, MPA program, 2nd year graduate student 

“The best part for me was the speech in the beginning about all the opportunities that UM provides and all about the great things that are accomplished by the different areas here. Getting to come to UM was a task for me. I’m from New Jersey and my parents really wanted me to go to Rutgers, so convincing my parents of the opportunities was my main selling point. So, to hear President Frenk speak about those things really resonated with me on a very personal level. It made me feel like: This is why I go here!” 
Madison Guido, Senior, Biology 

“The parts that resonated most with me was when he spoke about the Exemplary aspirations. Things like integrity, diversity, and respect. I liked how he touched on things from the outside world and the threats of civility. It’s important that he spoke about cultural belonging and as a member of the Student Government, I’ve met with him in the past and I can see that he is not just saying this but is showing it.” 
Milind Khurana, senior, double major in Political Science and Neuroscience 

“I was really excited to hear about the emphasis on diversity, and to be able to see the president directly address students questions.”
- Evan de Joya, senior, biology and geography major 

“What resonated the most with me is when President Frenk mentioned the university’s commitment to keep rising during the upcoming centennial. It’s nice as a student to know that we are going to be part of the change here at UM.”
- Nicolette Schurhoff, freshman majoring in biochemistry

“What excited me the most is when President Frenk began talking about the new state of the art housing apartments on campus. I think it’s a great option for upperclassmen. I’m excited to possibly live there one day.” 
- Heather Cyr, sophomore majoring in advertising management 

“I liked when he discussed how the centennial is a lifetime experience. I also thought it was interesting when he mentioned the numbers on diversity. Being a student I believe the school still has more work to do with integration, but President Frenk seemed to be aware and trying to move towards the right direction.” 
- Evelyn Mangold, senior majoring in public health and psychology

“What resonated with me was his willingness to put on an event and answer to students and faculty. I thought his speech about using campus diversity to combat our current toxic political climate was interesting. His bold vision for the future meant a lot to me. It makes me excited to hear what I have to look forward to and be part of in the near future.” 
- Landon Coles, freshman, Hammond Scholar

 “I found it interesting because we don’t always get the opportunity to hear what’s happening behind the scenes and [the President’s speech] let me focus on what the mission of the university is.
- Dija Thomas, sophomore majoring in psychology. 

“We are creating a positive melting pot of innovation and over the next five to ten years, UM will blow the world away with what they are going to do. President Frenk has put us on the right track to get focused and push the world forward.”
- Miguel Amezcua, second-year graduate student in Civil Engineering

“I love being associated with a university that’s at the highest level of academic excellence in medicine and I like the idea that my career goals line up with the university’s future goals.”
- Shenan Toote, a second-year graduate student in the Master’s in Vision Science and Investigative Ophthalmology program