CULTURE

Yale president comes to dinner at the Gaia Center

Events to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the foundation of the Fulbright scholarships in Greece culminated Thursday night in a dinner at the Gaia Center in Kifissia, where the guest of honor was Yale University President Richard C. Levin. The longest-serving Ivy League president (he has been president of Yale for 15 years) and one of the leaders in American higher education, Levin spoke on «Higher Education and Role of Non-Profit Universities.» Another speaker was Education Minister Evripidis Stylianidis, while Kathimerini Editor-in-Chief Alexis Papachelas adjudicated the debate that followed. Levin was born in San Francisco the year the Fulbright scholarship program began in Greece, when the country was emerging from World War II occupation and the civil war and was recouping its forces to build a future. This was his first trip to Greece. He also gave a public lecture at Zappeion Hall and at Athens College on «The Globalization of the University,» after which he spoke to university students from Athens and Thessaloniki. His visit was in the context of the «Great Ideas» program that has the support of the Niarchos Foundation and the US Embassy in Athens, which has brought many distinguished Americans to Greece, beginning in December 2007 with professor of biomedical ethics Dr Ruth Faden, followed by Glenn Lowry, director of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York last March. Levin studied history at Stanford and political science and philosophy at Oxford. In 1974, he received a doctorate in economic science from Yale, where he went on to teach.