Thomas Stafford, vice chancellor for Student Affairs, describes how he encouraged administrators to ensure they always put students first when implementing policies and programs. Dr. Stafford also describes his responsibilities as vice chancellor. Interview on May 3, 2012. (2:32)


Text Timestamp
Well the way I like to describe this job-. People say what do you do and I say I'm the vice chancellor 00:00:00.000 - 00:00:06.373
and they say well what does that mean? [Laughs] Most people don't have any idea. 00:00:06.373 - 00:00:10.347
If you look at the division of student affairs 00:00:10.347 - 00:00:14.727
you will find a lot of different departments. 00:00:14.727 - 00:00:19.412
You've got Army ROTC and you've got music and you've got the student health center and then you've got Greek life, and I could go on and on. 00:00:19.412 - 00:00:28.685
My point is that there are a lot of different departments 00:00:28.685 - 00:00:33.625
in the division and they do different things 00:00:33.625 - 00:00:37.558
but in the final analysis they are all doing the same thing, 00:00:37.558 - 00:00:42.377
and that is they are providing either a program or a service 00:00:42.377 - 00:00:48.073
that is designed to have a significant impact on the education and the development of our students, 00:00:48.073 - 00:00:56.045
and that's why I use this, 00:00:56.045 - 00:00:59.773
"Students First," because that applies to everybody in the division. 00:00:59.773 - 00:01:04.482
It doesn't matter what department you're in or what job you have, 00:01:04.482 - 00:01:07.917
I want everybody to always think about whether or not what they're doing is going to have a strong positive impact on our students. 00:01:07.917 - 00:01:16.494
So my job, the one word I would use to describe my job, 00:01:16.494 - 00:01:23.320
is leadership. 00:01:23.320 - 00:01:25.480
My job is to provide the leadership for all these people who are in all of these departments and 00:01:25.480 - 00:01:32.269
to support them and provide the vision 00:01:32.269 - 00:01:38.494
that I want them to follow, and my vision is the one I just showed you on my cup, "Students First," 00:01:38.494 - 00:01:45.081
and the other important value that I've emphasized has been the one on diversity that I mentioned earlier. 00:01:45.081 - 00:01:53.412
I want everybody to work hard to create that environment that welcomes everybody regardless of their race, gender, sexual orientation, or handicap, or disability. 00:01:53.412 - 00:02:05.649
So the role of a leader is to provide a vision, 00:02:05.649 - 00:02:11.324
to ensure that a good team of people are in place, 00:02:11.324 - 00:02:16.560
and to support that team and motivate that team and recognize them when they've done a great job. 00:02:16.560 - 00:02:24.497

Request transcript of full interview

More Video