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U of M Closes in on Top-Tier Status as David Rudd Closes Out His Presidency

University of Memphis

Last week, University of Memphis President M. David Rudd announced that he would be stepping down in May of 2022, after an 8-year tenure.

One of his major goals as president remains tantalizingly within reach: having the university named among the nation's top institutions for research and doctoral degrees, also known as Carnegie R1 status. University of Tennessee Knoxville and Vanderbilt University are the only two Tennessee schools on that list of 131.

Evaluations come up every three years. Factors include funding, staffing, graduate programs and academic output. Rudd says that three years ago, when the university got the closest yet to making the cut, his administration began focusing on specifics that would get the school to the finish line. 

Reporting from the gates of Graceland to the balcony of the Lorraine Motel, Christopher's favorite haunt is the intersection of history and cultural change. He is WKNO's News Director and Senior Producer at the University of Memphis' Institute for Public Service Reporting. Join his conversations about the Memphis arts scene on the WKNO Culture Desk Facebook page.