New Murray State president says family at the center of his decision to take the school's top job

08/06/2014 03:13 PM

MURRAY – Ensuring that Murray State University is a place where students feel at home and are able to learn the skills they need is the focus of the school’s new president who landed at the school after his daughter became one of those students.

On July 1, Robert Davies took over as the 13th president of Murray State University. He previously served as president of Eastern Oregon University. He was vice president for university relations at Indiana University of Pennsylvania prior to accepting the presidency at Eastern Oregon in 2009.

Davies said his road to Murray was influenced heavily by his daughter.

One challenge many universities are facing is old and outdated dorms.
Colleges and universities are struggling because there are so many incoming freshman who opt to forgo the dorms on campus and live with friends in apartments off campus.

The problem is, statistically, students who live off campus, especially early on in their college careers, tend not to graduate.

Davies says that at Murray State, residential life is about much more than the buildings themselves.

“We have over 10,000 students at Murray State University. How do we build a sense of community and pride among that large population? By breaking down those 10,000 students into smaller segments and creating a culture within a culture that allow the students to grow and expand,” Davies said.

See part two of the interview below:

Murray State University has an enrollment of 10,943 students, including 16 percent doing graduate work. 60 percent of the student body is female.


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