UD names pub­lic pol­icy school in Joe Bi­den’s honor

Newark Post - - LOCAL NEWS - By BROOKE SCHULTZ [email protected]­pub.com

When for­mer Vice Pres­i­dent Joe Bi­den gives stu­dents ad­vice on where to pur­sue their higher ed­u­ca­tion, he tells them to do what he did: pick a univer­sity they’ve been ac­cepted into that they wouldn’t be ac­cepted into 10 years from now.

The re­mark earned a laugh from those in at­ten­dance at the Univer­sity of Delaware’s board of trustees meet­ing, where the univer­sity an­nounced it would re­name the School of Pub­lic Pol­icy and Ad­min­is­tra­tion af­ter Bi­den.

“This is truly a spe­cial mo­ment in the his­tory of the univer­sity,” UD Pres­i­dent Den­nis As­sa­nis said Tues­day. “Very few in­sti­tu­tions can claim an alum­nus who is such a dis­tin­guished and ac­com­plished leader and a true pub­lic ser­vant, a per­son like Vice Pres­i­dent Joe Bi­den.”

The univer­sity will re­name the school the Joseph R. Bi­den Jr. School of Pub­lic Pol­icy and Ad­min­is­tra­tion.

Bi­den said it was an honor that the univer­sity named the school af­ter him.

“I never re­ally thought I’d be af­fected by an honor like this has af­fected me, but you know, I’m con­vinced that we have an op­por­tu­nity, be­cause of the tremen­dous pro­fes­sors that are here and the col­lab­o­ra­tion that goes on in the school of pub­lic pol­icy, to be the best in the na­tion, the very best in the na­tion,” he said. “That’s not hy­per­bole.”

Bi­den grad­u­ated from UD in 1965 with a dou­ble ma­jor in his­tory and po­lit­i­cal science. He and As­sa­nis joked about his GPA.

“I never told you this, Mr. Pres­i­dent, but my se­nior year, the pro­fes­sors at the school of po­lit­i­cal science nom­i­nated me for out­stand­ing stu­dent and I got a call from Dr. [Leroy] Ben­nett, and he said, ‘Joe, I didn’t re­al­ize what your over­all GPA was. We can’t give it to you,’” Bi­den re­called.

His pro­fes­sors had a pro­found im­pact on him as a stu­dent and in be­gin­ning his po­lit­i­cal ca­reer, he said.

“I prom­ise I’ll try to make you proud, as long as I’m around, that you made this de­ci­sion,” he said.

As­sa­nis said the stu­dents to­day are just as ea­ger to take on the world as Bi­den was.

“Our pro­fes­sors, and many of them are here in the au­di­ence, are just as ded­i­cated to the suc­cess of our stu­dents,” As­sa­nis said.

NE­WARK POST FILE PHOTO BY JOSH SHAN­NON

For­mer Vice Pres­i­dent Joe Bi­den speaks at the Univer­sity of Delaware last year. The univer­sity an­nounced Tues­day it would re­name its school of pub­lic pol­icy and ad­min­is­tra­tion in his honor.

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