New UC Davis Chancellor Addresses Students at Welcome Day

DAVIS -- New UC Davis Chancellor Gary May addressed students for his first Welcome Day in his new post.

"What an honor it is to be chancellor, what an honor it is to lead an institution of such excellence," May said Monday.

May was previously the engineering dean at Georgia Tech University. He was hired earlier this year to replace former Chancellor Linda Katehi, who resigned after an investigation revealed she had violated several university policies including nepotism and misuse of student funds.

Many students said Monday that this semester is a chance for a fresh start.

"We all need to learn that lesson in life. In general, you know, I think whatever happened, happened. And now it's a new moment," junior Katy Bilan said.

May says his focus is on the future of UC Davis, hence the theme of Monday's event -- "Future Forward."

"To set a tone that UC Davis is moving forward with confidence and commitment to excellence like never before," May said. "Who will stand in the way of a university who wants to boldly go where no university has gone before? Resistance is futile."

Former faculty member Leslie Maulhardt says she hopes May is similar to Chancellor Emeritus Larry Vanderhoef, who led the university for 25 years before he died in 2015.

"He was a chancellor who was always looking people in the eye and saying hello putting his hand out to get to know people," Maulhardt said. "I feel we fell away from that the last few years. So I'm hoping chancellor May will bring that back.