Gee, by the numbers

AndyVance's picture
June 18, 2013 at 11:24a

In one of the several posts and threads about the most recent, and ultimately tenure-ending gaffes committed by legendary Ohio State President E. Gordon Gee, someone asked for a succinct recitation of his many, many accomplishments. While the general consensus is that he is a "transformational leader" who has significantly advanced the mission and vision of our university, it's hard to put his many achievements into a handy list or set of talking points.

Fortunately, two writers at onCampus, Ohio State's faculty and staff news outlet, did just that. Here are some highlights:

  • Significant gains in student retention and graduation rates.
  • Hundreds of millions of dollars more for research and student aid.
  • A nearly doubling of the international student population.
  • An increase in the number of faculty named to the national academies and as fellows to the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
  • Endowment fund growth that led the nation among colleges and universities in 2012.
  • Generating revenue through creative use of university assets and affinity agreements to enhance Ohio State’s core academic mission.

Okay, but what about some quantifiable stuff? Well, the authors had some numbers to back up our warm and fuzzy feelings for Dr. Gee, too:

  • Cancer research donations have increased by 669 percent, including $42 million raised via the Pelotonia.
  • Institutional financial aid for students has risen to $450 million from $370 million.
  • Average ACT scores have risen to 29 from 27.
  • New Gateway Offices have opened in Shanghai, China and Mumbai, India, expanding our outreach to students, alumni and partners.
  • Six-year graduation rates are 82.4 percent, up from 72.7 percent.
  • President Gee helped raise more than $1.6 billion in private funding. The past two years have been the most successful fundraising years in university history.
  • Applications to Ohio State have risen by 60 percent, to 35,000 from 22,000.
  • Finance strategies generated more than $1 billion to support academics core ­— including century bonds, parking lease, streamlining and affinity agreements.

In other words, the second Gee era (2007-2013) has been a pretty damn amazing success story for the Ohio State community. Perhaps his biggest fingerprints, however, are left in the form of the vision that is guiding the University now and moving forward.

Since that time, Ohio State has rolled out the One University Framework, a universal planning document that provides direction for current and future growth for the next 50-100 years — all in context of a larger picture of increased collaboration and cooperation.

University leadership, under Alutto’s academic direction, has mapped out the intersection between OSU’s strengths and global needs and unveiled three Discovery Themes — Health and Wellness; Food Safety and Security; and Energy and Environment — to focus both its significant intellect and its funding in order to make a difference in the world. According to its strategic plan, Ohio State will hire 500 new faculty members over the next 10 years in the Discovery Theme areas.

At the same time, Gee and Alutto have focused on helping students succeed.

Much of the early fundraising for the $2.5 billion “But For Ohio State” campaign focused on student financial aid. And, guided by the One University Framework, efforts also are now solidly under way on a new Second-Year Transformational Experience Program — building and renovating student housing space that will allow all sophomores to live on campus where they will have more opportunity to interact with faculty members.

“It should be clear to all that President Gee has enhanced the university in immeasurable ways,” Alutto told the Board of Trustees. “Because of his vision and the remarkable team he has assembled, the journey from excellence to eminence is well under way. … President Gee leaves us with a foundation of strength and a model for presidential impact that will serve Ohio State well in the future.”

So as July 1 approaches, and along with it the end of one of the greatest eras in University history, let us again raise a glass to one of our greatest presidents, E. Gordon Gee. May he live forever.



Comments Show All Comments

NoVA Buckeye's picture

The offseason begins when your season ends. Even then there are no days off.

burkmon's picture

Thank you for taking the time  to post this, Andy!


Jason Priestas's picture

This is great. Thanks for taking the time to put this together.

Baroclinicity's picture

Well done, Andy.

When you're holding a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

southbymidwest's picture

By the way-that average ACT score of 29? That composite score ranks in the top 7 percent of all who take the test. So the average incoming (I assume) OSU student has a better score on the ACT than 92.99999... percent of the rest of the ACT taking world. Pretty damn good scholastically in my book. To put that in perspective, the national average in 2012 was 21.1 Average for the state of Ohio was 21.8. Average for that state up north was 20.1. 
And thank you Andy for putting this here. Got my onCampus e-mail, and after reading this article, it made me even more frustrated with the naysayers.

AndyVance's picture

THIS, as the kids say these days. When I was a young freshman, a number of my cohort got into Ohio State with 21, 22 ACT scores. We often talk about how much tougher it would be to get admitted to main campus today. For all the talk we've done on the boards in recent weeks about the quality of education at TSUN, this simple state is a sign that our alma mater is moving in the right direction.

Buckeyeneer's picture

I read that each incoming freshman class has been the brightest in OSU's history based on ACT scores and incoming GPA's almost every year for about 15 years. My freshman year was 1998 and at that time the average ACT score was somewhere around 23. When I graduated I think the ACT scores were averaging around 24.5. I felt like quite the overachiever with a 28. Crazy to think that these days I'd be bringing the average down!

"Because the rules won't let you go for three." - Woody Hayes

THE Ohio State University

AndyVance's picture

Ditto - I was doing backflips at getting a 32 on my second try, but today I'd be pretty darn average on campus.

Triv's picture

Just finished my freshman year at OSU. I got 33 and a 3.8 in highschool and am receiving $2,000/year in merit scholarships. Comparatively I was offered full tuition at Ohio University, but couldn't say no to OSU haha

Sorry Urban, Woody is still my favorite

thekornidentity's picture

Triv, since you only got $2000/year, I'm assuming you pay in-state tuition. Do you have any idea how much you would pay if you were out of state with your grades? I'm asking because my grades/ACT score is very similar to yours and I want to know what deal I'm going to get.

“Nothing that comes easy in this world is worth a damn.” -Woody Hayes

William's picture

I'm from out-of-state, but was able to worm my way into in-state, and if you have anything close to what Triv has described, as I had very similar test scores, you should receive the National Buckeye Scholarship (worth ~$8,000 a year), the Trustee Board Scholarship (worth ~$1,200 a year), as well as any other merit scholarships you applied for (can't think of any off of the top of my head). 

cbusbuckeye's picture

How'd you manage to pull in-state tuition off? I'm paying out-of-state now with both the scholarships you mentioned but it is still significantly more than in-state, would love to know the secret to getting it!

William's picture

When my father enlisted in the U.S. Army he kept Ohio as his state of residency, held property here (his father's after he died), and paid Ohio state income tax along with NC state income tax (however every year the Ohio income tax was refunded to him I believe). So this established me as a beneficiary of an Ohio resident, so I got in-state out of it. The only other way to get switched from out-of-state to in-state is a long process. I'll look for the link on for making the switch. 

smith5568's picture

When I was there I believe you could change your residency after you lived "off-campus" for one year (it may have only been 9 months). I also attended as an out-of-state student with those same scholarships, however I was able to obtain other financial aid that made my out-of-state tuition less than in-state tuition so I never switched to in-state residency. Plus, the University couldn't guarantee what scholarships I would receive as an in-state student vs an out-of-state one.   

LILBUCKEYE's picture

I am out of gonna be a freshman this upcoming fall. I got a 32 on act and got $17,000 in scholarships. Then, I applied for the morril scholarship and received full out of state tuition which is around $25,000. 

The Ohio State University '17

southbymidwest's picture

Congratulations! Hope you have a great 4 years at OSU.

Denny's picture

Yes but the university is just there to support the football program anyways and also who cares he wore bow ties and rabble rabble rabble
Thanks for this, Andy. This is great.


AndyVance's picture

I'm still aggravated by the whole thing, and the onCampus piece reminded me that I'm not just mad because I love Gordon Gee as a person, but because his leaving is really, really bad for the university. Thanks, everyone, for the positive comments.

Buckeyeneer's picture

I'll never forgive the PC police and the national media for driving him out.

"Because the rules won't let you go for three." - Woody Hayes

THE Ohio State University

Hovenaut's picture

Excellent.....and at the end of the day, actions still speak louder than words.

Maestro's picture

I hope Gee has a role in selecting his replacement.  Hopefully, considering his age, he was thinking about one for a little while at least.

vacuuming sucks

AndyVance's picture

I've asked myself more than once, would he have been asked to leave allowed to retire if Lex Wexner was still chairman of the Board.
To your point, I'm guessing that as visionary as Gee is, he's given it some thought. That said, I honestly don't know if he'd been thinking about retiring at all prior to this. I know he said he was, but the man worked like he was going to be President for life, which would have been a-ok by me.

OSU_ALUM_05's picture

Wondered the same thing about the Wexner influence (or lack thereof).

Yeti's have feelings too.

Knarcisi's picture

+1.  Facts rule.

tdible2132's picture

You will be missed Gordon Gee, you will be missed. 

tdible2132's picture

Thanks for the write up though Andy! Very informative and well put together.

jfunk's picture

As the person who made the original request, thank you so much Andy. It really is just staggering how much Gee has done for the University.

Scotch: It may be too early to drink it, yes; but people it is never to early to think about it.

AndyVance's picture

Thanks for planting that seed in the back of my mind - I couldn't remember which thread or who'd posted the question, but when I saw the onCampus piece, I wanted to be sure to share the info. It needs to be plastered on some billboards, buildings, kiosks, bulletin boards and a big ass statue of Gordon Gee.

jfunk's picture

Exactly. It's one thing to say the man did a lot for the University, but it's not until you actually see the numbers that you understand just how much he has improved Ohio State during his tenure. And I'd love to send this list to every hack journalist that was screaming for Gee's head over an admittedly ill-conceived attempt at humor.

Scotch: It may be too early to drink it, yes; but people it is never to early to think about it.

Bolt's picture

As always, Andy comes through with pure quality!

AndyVance's picture

Thanks Bolt! Happy to be of service to the community.