Standing ovations and Penguin pride were the order of the day as more than 1,600 students, alumni, employees and community supporters flocked to Beeghly Center for the installation of Jim Tressel as the ninth president of YSU.
With Gov. John Kasich, university and college presidents from throughout Ohio and members of the YSU Board of Trustees – current and past – looking on, Tressel took the oath of office, followed by a thunderous standing ovation.
“There is incredibly wide, diverse and overwhelming support for this new presidency,” Leonard Schiavone, vice chair of the Board of Trustees, told the crowd before the oath. “We feel fortunate to welcome Jim and Ellen back as members of the YSU community.”
Kasich said Tressel will provide the jolt, energy and leadership that is needed to restore Youngstown’s greatness.
“This can be a great moment (for Youngstown) because we’ve got somebody back here who’s a doer, who has integrity, who has energy, who has vision, who understands teamwork,” he said. “(“There’s) no room for turf, no room for fighting. The sun is coming up in Youngstown again.”
Eric Shehadi, a student member of the Board of Trustees, addressed students in the crowd: “Rest assured that President Tressel is committed to our success.”
Tressel talked about the success of the university – its students, faculty and programs – and also the challenges facing the institution. It’s important, he said, for YSU to set goals “that are way beyond what has ever been done.”
“If we raise our excellence, we will be able to handle those challenging times,” he said.
Watch the ceremony on YSU’s YouTube channel.