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UF presidential finalist Sen. Ben Sasse in Gainesville today for campus visit

The university will livestream public sessions with students, faculty and university employees.
Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., talks during the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020, on Capitol Hill in Washington. On Monday, he travels to Gainesville to meet with students, faculty and employees at the University of Florida.
Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., talks during the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020, on Capitol Hill in Washington. On Monday, he travels to Gainesville to meet with students, faculty and employees at the University of Florida. [ PATRICK SEMANSKY | AP ]
Published Oct. 10, 2022|Updated Oct. 10, 2022

U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse will visit the University of Florida campus in Gainesville on Monday for a series of public forums following last week’s announcement that he is the lone finalist to be the school’s next president.

The Nebraska Republican will appear in the president’s ballroom at Emerson Alumni Hall for separate sessions with faculty, students and university employees.

The faculty session will begin at 1 p.m., followed by a forum at 2:30 p.m. with students and one at 3:45 p.m. with employees. All three sessions will be livestreamed here.

Related: Ben Sasse could be UF’s new president. Here are some of his views.

After the sessions, people can share feedback on the university’s presidential search website.

Sasse, 50, is scheduled to return to Gainesville on Nov. 1 to be interviewed by the UF board of trustees.

He was named a finalist during a national search conducted under a new Florida law that allows the state’s public colleges and universities to keep the names of presidential candidates confidential initially. Once a “final group of applicants” is established, the names must become public. The University of Florida’s presidential search committee decided on a “final group” of one.

“Along the way, I came to see the University of Florida as the most interesting university in the country,” Sasse said in an interview. “It’s the most important institution in the state with the most dynamic economy in the union.”

Before his election to the Senate in 2014, Sasse was president of Midland University, a school of about 1,500 students north of Omaha, Nebraska. He has five academic degrees, including two master’s degrees and a doctoral degree from Yale University and a bachelor’s from Harvard University.

If selected for the UF job, he would be the flagship university’s 13th president, replacing Kent Fuchs, who has held the post since 2015.

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