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Summers turns Crimson
Larry Summers is going home again , and he's getting a bigger office.
Larry Summers is going home again , and he's getting a bigger office. The former Harvard economics professor, who gave up his tenure in 1991 to become chief economist of the World Bank, then U.S. Treasury secretary, will return to his alma mater in July as its president. Last month Summers, 46, beat out both the president of the University of Michigan and Harvard's provost for the job. The school has a $19 billion endowment, so Summers is not exactly facing a turnaround job. Still, students and faculty have been grumbling about the declining quality of the Harvard undergraduate experience and the university's strict academic hiring and promotion policies. Summers promises to seriously consider all complaints. "The issues I will need to focus on are making sure we're doing the very best to provide undergraduate students with the best possible education, making sure Harvard keeps up with recent changes in the sciences and making sure we can recruit into teaching at a time when the market for young academics is becoming increasingly competitive," he says. Thanks to the juicy endowment, there's no pressure on Summers to start heavy fundraising, though he hopes eventually to "have the opportunity to explain my excitement to university supporters."