10 years with T.Haas

Grand Valley State University President Thomas J. Haas is known to students as T. Haas, a nickname that Haas said is just one of the many accomplishments he is proud of. As he goes into his 10th year as president of the university, Haas reflects on his time on campus, the challenges he’s faced and his goals for the future.

“Over the past nine years, we’ve had remarkable success,” Haas said. “The best part of my job is the students. The student-focused mission has served us for over 50 years, and it will carry us into the future.”

The Power of 10 initiative allows GVSU alumni across the country to connect in celebration of the 10th anniversary. Haas kicked off the program in early August with a stop in Chicago, the first city on the 10-city tour.

Haas said this tour will “energize our alums so they can understand what it means to be a Laker for a lifetime.” Additionally, he is proud that 40 percent of the current GVSU alumni have graduated during his presidency.

His other accomplishments include the addition of the Division of Inclusion and Equity, helping create environments and relevant curriculums for student success, continuing to focus on liberal arts and investing in buildings that support these programs.

On the other hand, Haas has faced some challenges as president. He said the biggest problem has been state budgets because GVSU is “perennially the least-funded school in the state of Michigan,” Haas said.

In addition to focusing on access and affordability, Haas has many goals for his next 10 years at GVSU.

“I’d like to continue the investments we’ve been making in STEM and health sciences and in Allendale infrastructure,” he said. “We will increase the number of post-baccalaureate programs and invest in faculty and staff needs, too.”

Haas’ wife Marcia has been alongside him for many years and had many experiences at the university. She said she has enjoyed her time on campus, especially the opportunity to interact with the students.

“I like to be a cheerleader,” Marcia said. “I enjoy seeing other people do well and supporting people. Grand Valley is a good place to see them accomplish their goals and just go for it.”