With T.K. Wetherell having announced his plans to retire as president of Florida State University, a search is getting started to replace him. Justin de la Cruz, a graduate student, has started a campaign to select a Tallahassee native -- the rapper T-Pain -- for the job. A Web site is selling T-shirts that proclaim "Give Pain a Chance." The Facebook group for the "T-Pain Killa Cam-Pain" offers the following platform for the candidate:
- "Widespread collaboration among the faculty of different departments: Guest spots on each other's papers and projects."
- "Complimentary Dranks for everyone (students and faculty) representing FSU at all academic conferences."
- "Annual Ice Cream Social to take place On A Boat."
- "Replacing the water in all campus fountains and water fountains with Cham-Pain."
- "The formation of the FSU College of Hip Hop, with a new Rap Concert Hall to break ground in Spring 2010."
While Florida's higher education politics are unpredictable, the campaign may need new strategies to gain the support of those older than rap fans. Wetherell, the outgoing president told The Tallahassee Democrat that he hadn't heard of the rapper. “I’m more a Toby Keith, Johnny Cash guy,” he told the newspaper. “I don’t know what a T-Pain is. Can he lobby the Legislature, that’s all I want to know.”