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This Week In Conversation: U of L President Neeli Bendapudi On The University's Future

Neeli Bendapudi
tom fougerousse
U of L President Neeli Bendapudi

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This Week In Conversation: U of L President Neeli Bendapudi On The University's Future

With more than a year as University of Louisville’s president under her belt, Dr. Neeli Bendapudi has stirred change. As major controversies settle and university leaders look toward a strategic plan to chart the school’s future, In Conversation will look at what’s ahead for U of L and how that future could affect the city of Louisville.

A lot has happened at U of L over the past few years. Former president James Ramsey resigned amid allegations of misspending, prompting the school to sue him for “breach of fiduciary duty, fraudulent appropriations and improper diversion of funds for personal gain.”

More than a year later, the school fired head basketball coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich after a federal investigation of bribery was disclosed.  That came on the heels of NCAA sanctions stemming from a prostitution scandal involving the men’s basketball program.

Since being named the school’s president, Bendapudi — the former provost and executive vice chancellor at the University of Kansas — has promoted change and promised to court disenchanted donors. Change came sooner rather than later, when a Forbes Magazine report of prolific donor John Schnatter using the n-word on a conference call prompted Bendapudi to remove his company’s name from the school's football stadium and business school. Locals recognized Bendapudi’s work through an unprecedented welcome reception hosted by the Louisville Urban League.

This week In Conversation, we talk with Dr. Bendapudi about her tenure, the upcoming strategic plan and ask what’s ahead for the university.

Listen to In Conversation live on 89.3 WFPL Friday at 11 a.m. or follow along with our live tweets at @WFPLnews. Call with your questions or comments at 502-814-TALK or tweet us with the hashtag #WFPLconversation. We’re also on Facebook.


Kyeland Jackson is an Associate Producer for WFPL News.