President Marion A. Ruebel, 1996 – 1998

During his 26-year career at the University prior to becoming president, Marion A. Ruebel had served in nearly every top administrative position, earning him the unofficial title of "designated hitter." The long-time education professor sought to improve the quality of education throughout the continuum, from kindergarten through college, and he expanded access to the University through a distance learning initiative, increased off-campus programming and a greatly enhanced scholarship program.

1996

Holdings of the University libraries pass the 1-million- volume mark in July.

The Scholarships for Excellence initiative is launched. It will create 200 full academic scholarships by 2000.

1997 

The Medina Link project is begun, putting University resources within reach of more than 26,000 public school students throughout Medina County via distance learning technology.

In December, the University hosts United States President Bill Clinton for a nationally broadcast "town hall meeting" discussion titled, "One America: President Clinton's Initiative on Race."

1998

Former U.S. President George Herbert Walker Bush speaks at the School of Law Dean's Club Dinner in January.

With a $3 million gift from The Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company, the University concludes a $125 million fund-raising campaign three years early.

Trustees approve a contract to complete a new plan for enhancing the campus and its facilities. The University announces its intent to pursue two complementary goals – being named as a Carnegie Teaching Academy and increasing annual federal research funding to more than $15.5 million.