Veil hits the ground running

· 3 min read

Veil hits the ground running

Downtime with the Deans
Shari Veil runs on a Lincoln trail.
Craig Chandler | University Communication and Marketing
Shari Veil runs on a Lincoln trail.

Editor’s Note — Throughout the spring, summer and fall 2023 terms, Curt Bright, videographer in University Communication and Marketing, worked with the Nebraska Alumni Association to highlight the deans and their respective colleges at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. This video and Q&A is from the resulting series, “Downtime with the Deans,” that ran in Nebraska Quarterly. Each month, a vignette from the series will be featured on Nebraska Today.

Shari Veil, dean of the College of Journalism and Mass Communications, hits the trails often to clear her mind and focus on the paths ahead.

Video: Downtime with the Deans — Shari Veil

What do you enjoy doing when you are not wearing your Dean hat?

I enjoy running. Actually, I enjoy running road races and trail runs with friends. I do the training runs so I don’t look like a fool on race day.

How did you become interested in that?

I had some friends who were putting together a marathon relay team. I agreed to do the 3-mile leg. Someone got hurt, and I agreed to do the 7-mile leg instead. Two weeks later I ran my first half marathon. I’ve run four marathons and 30-plus half marathons since then. I’ve even captained a 200-mile, 12-person relay team — twice!

Do others participate with you?

Yes! Everywhere I’ve lived, I’ve picked up a new running buddy or two. One of my sisters from North Dakota, a friend from Oklahoma and another friend from Kentucky are my most loyal running buddies. We’ve run New Orleans, Las Vegas, Lexington, Louisville, Fargo, Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Fort Worth and now Lincoln together. We usually add in another adventure with our runs like hiking, kayaking, zip lining or rock climbing. It depends on whether we are doing a marathon or a half marathon and how much energy we have left after the race.

What mental and/or physical benefits do you derive from participating in that activity?

Running helps me clear my mind, so I can focus on what’s ahead. It also gives me a boost of confidence. When I’ve knocked out a 7-mile run before even getting to campus, I feel like I can accomplish anything.

If you were granted three wishes for your college what would those be?

1 — For society to recognize a free press doesn’t come without a cost. If we want a free press, then we need to invest in it. A free press isn’t 100% government subsidized or a corporate mouthpiece; it is paid for and supported by a responsible, informed citizenry. Informed decision-making is central to a democratic society, and a free press makes that possible.

2 — For our students to find their calling or find our college isn’t for them early in their academic careers. The professions our graduates go into take commitment and a lot of grit. Our students who go all in and embrace every opportunity in our college are incredibly successful and have wonderful, fulfilling careers. But you’ve got to love it. Otherwise, why do it?

3 — I’d wish for our alumni to know they are always welcome home. Our commitment to our students doesn’t end when they cross the stage to get their diploma. We don’t just want to help our graduates find their first job; we want to support them throughout their careers.

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