Education innovator Salman Khan to kick off new lecture series Sept. 17

September 12, 2013 | Events, UToday, Honors
By Jon Strunk

A globally renowned education innovator will launch The University of Toledo’s Jesup Scott Honors College Distinguished Lecture Series Tuesday, Sept. 17, at 7 p.m. in UT’s newly renovated Doermann Theater on the third floor of University Hall.



Salman Khan is the founder of the Khan Academy, a not-for-profit organization with a mission to bring a top-tier education to anyone with an Internet connection. Khan Academy has a library of more than 3,000 web videos ranging from algebra and chemistry to art history and economics.

“People like Salman Khan are the inspirations for the innovative approaches we are taking at The University of Toledo as we make sure the education our students receive keeps pace with rapid societal changes UT graduates will face once they begin their career,” said Dr. Scott Scarborough, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs.

Scarborough pointed to plans, particularly in the Jesup Scott Honors College, to flip classrooms — having students listen to lectures prior to class and then completing interactive activities during class time with a professor’s assistance.

A hedge fund analyst, Khan walked away from Wall Street and began what became Khan Academy as a simple effort to provide tutoring for his niece. As word spread and the videos became more and more popular, Khan found himself working with people like Microsoft founder Bill Gates to find new ways to enhance education across the nation.

During his 2012 annual address to the University community, UT President Lloyd Jacobs touted Khan as an education game-changer who “will be recognized in subsequent decades, perhaps centuries, as the real innovator in teaching and learning.”

“Knowledge is now fluid, moveable, mercurial and exists in cyberspace,” Jacobs said last September. “Khan’s transmission of knowledge freely and for free will have tremendous transformative power.

“Already the great universities of the world are emulating him,” Jacobs said at the time, urging UT to embrace these transformations and help lead the effort.

Khan is the first of four guests who will speak during the 2013-14 academic year as part of the Honors College Distinguished Lecture Series. Also speaking will be:

• Political consultant James Carville Monday, Nov. 18;

• Business strategy expert Richard Rumelt Monday, Jan. 13; and

• Arizona State University President Michael Crow Monday, March 10.

All lectures will take place at 7 p.m. in Doermann Theater, and speakers will take audience questions. Visit to order tickets and learn more about the speakers.

“I remember when I was in college the impact that lecture series with the leading minds of the day had on me and my education,” Scarborough said. “A distinguished lecture series sponsored at the University-wide level is something that top-tier universities provide to their students and to their communities, and UT is proud to offer the same for Toledo and northwest Ohio.”

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