The Ultimate Résumé: McRaven Q&A Is a Candid Look At UT’s Next Chancellor

Admiral William McRaven
What does it look like when one of the nation’s top military leaders applies for a high-level civilian job? Pretty darn impressive, as it turns out.

A Q&A document filled out by Admiral William McRaven, BJ ’77, Life Member, Distinguished Alumnus, and obtained by the Houston Chronicle, provides a rare and candid look into the closed-doors hiring process for the position of UT’s next chancellor. McRaven is the sole finalist for the position, which Francisco Cigarroa will soon be vacating.

McRaven’s thorough answers to questions about his leadership style, his accomplishments, and his ideas about how to run the UT System paint a picture of a future chancellor who will need to be diplomatic and balanced when entering the fractious and scandal-filled world of Texas higher education politics. Below are some highlights.

On his leadership experience:

“Throughout my 37 years in the military I have commanded special operations forces at every level. I understand how leadership must be exercised both at the tactical level and at the strategic level. Contrary to popular belief, the soldiers in the military are not robots. Leadership takes constant engagement and interaction. You must motivate your men and women.”

On his experience building relationships:

“In my job as the Commander of the Joint Special Operations Command, I traveled the world meeting with kings, presidents, prime ministers, dictators, and terrorists. Each engagement required a different level of relationship building.”

On his vision for the UT System:

“The role of the UT System should be to ensure all qualified students in the state of Texas receive a world class education. Having received a degree in journalism, I value a liberal education while understanding completely the need for a highly technical and business-oriented work force. The balance of these two disciplines and understanding how they interact to create a graduate that can excel in today’s global market place is the key to higher education.”

On why he wanted the job:

“I was only recently approached about the position, but knowing that, if selected, I would have an opportunity to shape the future of the academic institutions as well as the medical and research facilities in Texas—is intriguing.”

On how his friends would describe him:

“I like a good joke, a good steak, a good drink, and anything on ESPN.”

Read the full Q&A below:

McRaven Questionnaire

Photo by Michael O’Brien.


Tags: , , , ,