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Sands’ Investiture Highlights Bright Future of CSU

Seventh president urges university community to “dream big together”

The Investiture of President Harlan M. Sands

Before a packed and enthusiastic crowd of over 700 students, faculty, staff and community members at Waetjen Auditorium on campus, as well as thousands more watching online, Harlan M. Sands was formally installed as the seventh president of Cleveland State University October 5.

In his address, Sands committed to building on CSU’s unique position as a nationally recognized public, urban research university and pledged to strengthen its mission to provide accessible, high quality, career-focused education and research. He also stressed the importance of expanding Cleveland State’s identity as a key anchor institution for Northeast Ohio and a beacon for upward mobility for all.

“Together we will expand our reach as both an anchor and beacon, working to grow our already impressive brand,” Sands said “Together we will continue to serve our community with our unique mix of high-quality, affordable and accessible academic programs and transform lives.”

He also stressed the importance of every member of the CSU community in helping to make these goals a reality.

“So, as we build our CSU of tomorrow, it is clear that our future will be defined, no surprise, by our people...Together we will define our own future and not let the future define us.”

While Sands began his tenure June 1, his formal Investiture allowed the CSU community to celebrate the beginning of the next chapter in the history of the university while also allowing the president to outline his vision for the future of the institution.

The event was attended by numerous local and national civic leaders, including Congresswoman Marcia Fudge, Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish and Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson. Addresses were also delivered by several CSU community members and special guests, including Samia Shaheen, president of the CSU Student Government Association and Eli Capilouto, president of the University of Kentucky.

“On behalf of the entire study body of Cleveland State University, it is my privilege, my pleasure and my honor to congratulate Mr. Harlan M. Sands,” Shaheen said. “We look forward to working with you.”

“Knowing what I know as a university president, and knowing Harlan Sands as I do, I see extraordinary opportunity and a bright future for Cleveland State University” Capilouto noted.

Sands concluded the ceremony by urging the community to work together to make its future the best it possibly can be.

“Together, we will build a best-in-class research and teaching university known for its groundbreaking cradle to career programs that expand the boundaries of academic creativity and innovation…Let’s dream big together.”

To view President Sands’ full speech, visit