North­eastern Pres­i­dent Joseph E. Aoun dis­cussed the university’s vision for the future with about 30 mem­bers of the Stu­dent Gov­ern­ment Asso­ci­a­tion on Wednesday evening in the Alumni Center.

We have great momentum,” Aoun said. “The uni­ver­sity is moving for­ward not by playing it safe but by cap­i­tal­izing on its differentiation.”

He pointed in par­tic­ular to the university’s expe­ri­en­tial learning pro­gram, which enables stu­dents to put ideas into action and grow as inno­v­a­tive problem solvers through work, research, inter­na­tional study, and ser­vice in 114 coun­tries around the world.

We need to pro­mote our global edu­ca­tion more,” Aoun said. “The world is a source of learning and enlight­en­ment and you cannot ignore it.”

Later in the evening, Aoun noted the faculty’s focus on pur­suing use-​​inspired, inter­dis­ci­pli­nary research in health, secu­rity, and sustainability. Many of the 387 fac­ulty mem­bers who have joined the uni­ver­sity over the past seven years have joint appoint­ments in fields that inter­sect across col­leges and disciplines.

The col­leges are not in silos and that’s rare in higher edu­ca­tion,” Aoun said, noting Northeastern’s plan to hire more of the world’s leading edu­ca­tors and scholars. “They are a resource for each other.”

He also lauded the entre­pre­neurial spirit and drive North­eastern stu­dents pos­sess, as well as their deep com­mit­ment to make an impact in the sur­rounding communities.

In the Q-​​and-​​A, a second-​​year stu­dent in the D’Amore-McKim School of Busi­ness asked Aoun to name one of the university’s weak­nesses. “We have to make more of an effort to dis­sem­i­nate what we are doing,” Aoun said. “We are growing so rapidly that we have a lot to share.”

He noted that stu­dents and alumni have been eager to tell the Twit­ter­verse why co-​​op has trans­formed their lives using #iheartcoop. By a show of hands, every stu­dent in the room had heard about Northeastern’s new social media phenomenon.

SGA Pres­i­dent Nick Naraghi, CIS’15, asked Aoun to name the next big project in the university’s pipeline. The pres­i­dent pointed to next Friday’s ground­breaking cer­e­mony for Northeastern’s new state-​​of-​​the-​​art inter­dis­ci­pli­nary sci­ence and engi­neering research com­plex in Rox­bury on Columbus Avenue.

This project is going to bring North­eastern closer to the com­mu­nity and the com­mu­nity closer to North­eastern,” Aoun said. “North­eastern is investing in Rox­bury,” he added. “When you return to North­eastern in five years from now, Rox­bury will be a place with more jobs, busi­nesses, and opportunities.”

Aoun closed by offering keen advice to the young sen­a­tors, whom he char­ac­ter­ized as “com­mu­nity ambas­sadors.” “Always think about grooming your suc­ces­sors,” he told them. “Give them the oppor­tu­nity to tackle challenges.”