As part of his unofficial welcome packet, we included a list of questions we thought would paint a picture of Dr. Hancock’s personality. Below you will find our questions and his responses. Sure Dr. Hancock is the new kid on the block, but he needs to get to know some of us here at MU as well. After reading his answers, chime in and give us some of yours!
Book that changed my life and why: The Man Who Planted Trees, by Jean Giono. I truly subscribe to the notion that “a good book reads you,” and such is the case here. It illustrates the difference one person can make in totally transforming the landscape – of an environment as well as humanity.
Person in history I would like to meet and why: Thomas Jefferson. Having grown up in Virginia and studied about Jefferson throughout grade school and ultimately earning my doctorate from the University of Virginia, I have always been impressed with this Renaissance man’s grasp of so many areas and the impact he had not only in history, but also in education, architecture and horticulture. It would have been interesting to know how he went about planning his life and setting his priorities, and ultimately becoming such a wonderful model for civic engagement.
The one thing I’m most proud of in my life: My family – their many accomplishments and the love they share for one another.
If I had unlimited dollars for a week, how would I spend it? I would use the funds to establish a scholarship program to enable promising students to earn a college education at Methodist University. They would be required to not only maintain a satisfactory academic record, but also demonstrate some kind of engagement in the community.
The most daring or dangerous thing I have ever done: Bungee jumping with two of my sons in New Zealand.
The three top things on my bucket list: Run the London marathon, cruise around the world, own and restore a 1952 Chevy truck.
Which bad habit would I get rid of? My children would say that I need to throw away all of my black mock turtlenecks, as they are my favorite thing to wear along with comfortable pair of jeans. But my choice would be to give up desserts, especially given the number of nice meals I will need to eat in my role as president.
Which actor should play me in the story of my life? Tom Hanks. Tom has those “Everyman” qualities. He mostly plays roles of an ordinary person who is thrust into challenging situations, and because of his persistence, passion, sense of humor and hard work, seems to always land on his feet and succeed. More than once, he has also been willing to reinvent himself in order to achieve his goals.
What’s your favorite movie and why? “It’s a Wonderful Life”. This movie has it all. Embedded in Jimmy Stewart’s character, it demonstrates the importance of putting family and others first, the power of prayer, the importance of believing and never losing hope, and the promise of happy endings if you work hard and want something bad enough.
Which world problem would I solve and why? Global access to a quality education. Simply put, education is the solution, or at least provides the tools to address every one of the world’s major challenges. Through knowledge, we can solve health issues, problems in multicultural communications, political unrest, and famine. Furthermore, education is the fundamental prerequisite for civic engagement that leads to the creation and preservation of democratic institutions.