Myles Brand, current president of the National Collegiate Athletic Association, will be one of the speakers sending the graduating class of 2003 off into the future at the commencement ceremony this weekend.

Brand, a graduate philosophy student at UR who received his Ph. D. in 1967, will be accepting the Charles Force Hutchison and Marjorie Smith Hutchison Medal for “outstanding achievement and notable service to the community, state or nation.”

Brand will be speaking briefly at the commencement ceremony and will be presenting at the philosophy departmental diploma ceremony.

“I’ll be trying to encourage the class as they go toward the future,” he said.

His extensive background in philosophy has led him to his various positions, starting as a professor of philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh back in 1967.

“I’ve been a philosophy professor for four decades,” he said, noting also that his career was enhanced with his graduate degree from UR. “[The UR degree] has been an advantage. I went directly after graduate school into my first teaching position.”

His other jobs include administrative stints in Ohio State University, University of Arizona, and most recently, from 1994 – 2002 served as President of Indiana University.

His switch in the beginning of 2003 to the NCAA to him, was a natural one.

“Going from university president to NCAA president seems natural to me,” he said. “They were looking for someone with academic experience but someone who can play a leadership role.”

Brand also felt his time at UR gave him valuable lessons, which he has carried with him. “I learned the value of thinking clearly and rationally and debating with other people before reaching a decision,” he said.

Brand commented on his views of the general ideals which apply to all periods of life.

“The values that you learn in college and grad school and the NCAA are always teamwork, hard work and the ability to win and lose with grace,” he said. “Striving for excellence is essential to success both in life and work.”

Provost Charles Phelps highlighted Brand’s accomplishments as a determining factor for receiving the medal. “His selection for the Hutchison Award is based on his excellent reputation as a university leader,” he said.

“His recent appointment as President of the NCAA increases the ‘salience’ of his visit, as it gives a window into the collegiate athletics world.”

The medal, awarded since 1977, is the highest alumni honor given at UR.

Brand expressed his appreciation of receiving it.

“Hutchison was a very important figure to the school – it is a great honor and a humbling honor,” he said.

Brand praised UR in general as well. “U of R is a great institution. I envy the young men and women now armed with a degree going out into the workforce.”

Linden can be reached at klinden@campustimes.org.



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