March 2008 Archives

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Robert F. Goheen, president of Princeton University from 1957 to 1972 during a period of transformative growth and change, died of heart failure Monday, March 31, at the University Medical Center at Princeton. He was 88.

Goheen was an assistant professor of classics when, at age 37, he was selected to become Princeton’s 16th president. During his tenure Princeton became coeducational, increased its ethnic and racial diversity and coped with protests against the war in Vietnam. The University expanded its commitment to research, its annual budget quadrupled, alumni contributions more than doubled and 25 new buildings were constructed on the main campus.

"With the passage of time, it becomes more and more clear that Bob Goheen was one of the great presidents of Princeton history," said President Shirley M. Tilghman. "He demonstrated remarkable courage in all he did, from introducing coeducation and increasing the diversity of the student body to strengthening the faculty and leading the University successfully through a time of societal upheaval in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He was greatly admired and respected for his leadership and vision and attentiveness to the views of others, and widely beloved among Princetonians for the values and personal qualities that were evident from the day he arrived on campus as a freshman and throughout his life."
 
This blog is intended to honor the life and legacy of Robert F. Goheen and is open to all of those who wish to share comments and stories that capture the spirit of one of Princeton’s most beloved members. To add your thoughts, click on the Comments link above.