GSE Publications

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

January 2007


The invitation arrived in late June 2005. The secretary of education, Margaret Spellings, was asking me to join her in Denver for a round-table discussion focusing on higher education. Nothing seemed right: There was no list of invited participants, no offer to cover travel costs, no indication really of intended purposes or likely outcomes. I had all but decided to decline, citing family and other responsibilities, when an e-mail message arrived from Jim Duderstadt, president emeritus of the University of Michigan, saying he hoped that I would join him for breakfast in Denver the morning of the round table. I bought my tickets that afternoon.


Postprint version. Published in The Chronicle of Higher Education, Volume 53, Issue 21, January 2007, pages B6.



Date Posted: 27 February 2007