Other than the split infinitive, I am very pleased to see the following:
March 26, 2009
To the faculties, staffs and students of Baylor College of Medicine and Rice University:
We are pleased to announce that the governing boards of Rice and BCM this week approved the signing of a memorandum of understanding that lays out a broad framework for formal negotiations about a possible merger of our two institutions.
While no decision on a merger has yet been made and many issues remain to be resolved, our boards have concluded that a closer affiliation has abundant potential benefits for both institutions, as well as for our home city of Houston. Months of informal discussions have confirmed that the missions and aspirations of our two institutions are in fact closely aligned, that both institutions would benefit in many ways from a merger and that, together, Rice and BCM could be one of the world’s leading research universities.
The MOU framework will allow us to systematically and thoroughly move ahead with the next stage of discussions. Over the next few months, we will seek to address issues and concerns that have surfaced from those discussions, and we will continue to solicit input from members of our respective communities. The success of a merger, or any closer affiliation, will also depend significantly on how effectively we plan for and manage its implementation.
Baylor College of Medicine and Rice University are institutions of distinction that bring great achievements and greater potential to such a merger. Each is known throughout the world for contributions to important areas of human knowledge and service. Both are entering this conversation closely attentive to the importance of sustaining that which is great, inspired by the possibilities of expanded distinction and contribution, respectful of our values and traditions, and committed to our responsibilities to Houston and the broader society.
Thank you for the suggestions and insights that have helped shape our discussions so far. We continue to welcome your ideas going forward.
William T. Butler, M.D.
Baylor College of Medicine
David W. Leebron