NORTHFIELD – Norwich University welcomes Col. Mark Anarumo, Ph.D., USAF, (Ret.) on his first day as 24th president of the nation’s oldest private military college. President Anarumo comes to Norwich most recently as the Director and Permanent Professor for the Center for Character and Leadership Development, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado, a presidentially-appointed position. Anarumo assumes the role as university president during a historic time not just for Norwich, which celebrated its bicentennial in 2019, but also for the world during this global pandemic and associated economic recession, which is poised to change not just the field of higher education, but of society at large.Comparing it to challenges he has faced in the past, Anarumo says he is prepared and invigorated to accept the challenge of leading during such uncertain times: “The past six months have been extremely difficult for our nation. Some citizens have been especially hard hit; we have a difficult road before us. As challenging as things have been, I am sincerely optimistic that we will recover very well, and our country will end in a better place than when this pandemic started. “I am confident we can say the same about the Norwich community. Due to the remarkable accomplishments of President Schneider and his leadership team, the world-class faculty of Norwich University, and our staff and coaches, our alumni and our students, Norwich will lead in the nation’s and the state’s recovery and be postured for growth. Because of the school’s resiliency, I will be able to focus on agility and flexibility to continue our success. Every crisis includes opportunity. It will be my job to ensure we are ready to seize opportunities as they are presented.” Anarumo’s top three priorities for this year are to lead the Norwich community through the necessary changes inherent with the COVID-19 pandemic which ensures the health and safety of the campus community; to address academic, operational and financial priorities of Norwich in its third century of service to the nation; and to learn the Norwich culture in order to preserve the 200-year-old tradition of educating citizen soldiers to both build and defend the republic. Anarumo began his military career in the U.S. Army, then served 26 years in the U.S. Air Force, where he recently retired as a Colonel. His previous assignment was Vice Commander of the 39th Air Base Wing at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, where he was responsible for approximately 5,000 U.S. military, civilian and contractor personnel and the combat readiness of U.S. Air Force units at Incirlik and four geographically separated units in Turkey. He entered the Air Force in 1994 as the Distinguished Graduate of Air Force Reserve Officers’ Training Corps at Rutgers University. He earned a Bachelor’s degree, Master of Arts, and a Ph.D. in Criminal Justice – all from Rutgers University. Norwich University has convened a task force to plan the fall semester during the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions on physical gatherings. For the most up to date information, and a video introducing President Anarumo, please visit Norwich.edu/psa.