Spectrum News, the central N.Y. news channel, published the article, “Hobart and William Smith Colleges Makes Historic Announcement with New President” on April 21. The piece, written by Jordan Mazza, discusses the incoming president Gregory J. Vincent ’83 and his career in broadening access to higher education as well as interviews student Dominique DeRubeis ’18.
The full text of the article is included below.
GENEVA, N.Y. — Dr. Gregory Vincent has been named the new president of Hobart and William Smith Colleges. He is the first African American and alumnus to become president of the institution.
“Higher education is a public good,” said Dr. Vincent. “And the work that Hobart and William Smith does in the community, the economic impact, the connection to the community, Geneva 2020, are shining examples of what a college and community can do, and it truly has been an inspiration to many schools, both public and private.”
However, those public schools are set to become more competitive as New York State becomes the first in the nation to offer free four-year higher education for many families.
“Hobart and William Smith holds a very enviable position in the marketplace,” Vincent said. “But we can’t stay still. We have to continue to work, because if you stay still you’re going to fall behind.”
Students say they trust Dr. Vincent is up to the challenge.
“He is exceptionally qualified for the position,” said student Dominique Derubeis. “I was really impressed by what he said a month ago at some of the student forums, and sort of wanted to bring that full circle, and I think he has a great background to bring to the school.”
Vincent was an assistant attorney general in Ohio before serving most recently as vice president of diversity at the University of Texas Austin.
He graduated from Hobart in 1983 – and Christopher Gunn was one of his professors.
“A real catch for the colleges,” said Gunn. “I’m delighted. It’s a thrill to see a student come back as president.”
And Vincent says he’s thrilled to get started.
“Meet the students, the faculty, and staff, work on the excellent strategic plan that’s been laid out, work with the board of trustees, meet the community,” Vincent said. “And make sure that everyone understands that Hobart and William Smith is committed to making Geneva, the state, the nation, and the world a better place.”