Michael Schill named next president of Northwestern


Photo courtesy of Northwestern Now

Michael Schill. Currently the president of the University of Oregon, he was named Northwestern’s 17th president.

Isabel Funk, Summer Editor

Michael Schill will be Northwestern’s next president, the Board of Trustees announced Thursday.

Schill, who has served as president of the University of Oregon since 2015, will begin his presidency this fall. He will succeed current University President Morton Schapiro, who has served NU for 13 years. 

“I am thrilled, honored and humbled to join Northwestern, one of the world’s most prominent universities,” Schill said in an email to the community. “Northwestern has a long tradition of educating the brightest minds and pushing the boundaries of research and innovation.”

Schapiro announced his intention to resign in 2021, with the Board of Trustees naming former University of Wisconsin-Madison President Rebecca Blank as his successor in October 2021. However, Blank stepped down as president-elect in July after receiving a cancer diagnosis. The Presidential Search Committee then began working to find a new president after Schapiro agreed to stay on as University President until a successor could be chosen.

Schill previously served as the dean of the University of Chicago’s law school and the dean of the University of California Los Angeles’s law school. He has also been a tenured professor at New York University and the University of Pennsylvania.

“At Oregon, I worked hard with our students, faculty and staff to make the university a more inclusive community where all could flourish,” Schill said in the email. “I look forward to engaging with the entire Northwestern community to enhance diversity in all of its forms and to foster a sense of belonging and respect.”

A first-generation college graduate, Schill received an undergraduate degree from Princeton University and a law degree from Yale University, focusing his scholarship on affordable housing and land use.

At the University of Oregon, Schill oversaw the building of a new Black Cultural Center and the launch of programs to make higher education more accessible.

“The selection of President-elect Schill reflects the values and input of our community and institution and was informed by his deep commitment to research and academic rigor, his focus on student access and success, his commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, and demonstrated administrative leadership,” Peter Barris, chair of the Presidential Search Committee and incoming chair of the Board of Trustees, said in the news release.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @isabeldfunk

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