An “excited and humbled” Dr. Lamont O. Repollet on Aug. 31 delivered his first opening day address as Kean University president.

A child of Army veterans, Dr. Repollet talked about his path in education — pointing out that the “journey wasn’t easy” — and acknowledged some of his mentors who helped him along the way.

“I often say that education saved my life because the skills and tools I gained during college and graduate school are the guiding force that allowed me to effect positive change in the communities I serve,” he said. “Kean University is now that community.”

Here are some other highlights from Dr. Repollet’s address:

“Three principles will guide us this year: safety, academic excellence and equity.”

“All of us have been impacted by the trauma of a global pandemic. I carry the weight of these trying times every single day and it guides all of my decisions. I know it is my job to ensure that every member of our Kean community feels safe and secure as possible in the midst of this pandemic.”

“I truly understand the depth of our collective fear and importantly the obstacles this pandemic has placed in many of our paths. But I want everyone at Kean to know that there is someone here to talk to; there are resources available to guide and assist you. You are not alone when you are part of the Kean family.”

“As I look to the future for Kean, I see nothing but opportunity — the opportunity to celebrate our greatness and continue to climb higher to go from great to elite.”

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