As president of the University of Chicago, Robert J. Zimmer has a unique view to the challenges and opportunities facing higher education, and one of the biggest obstacles he sees is access for all students. While private institutions continue to offer greater financial support, Zimmer believes government and public institutions now need to do their part. “Is the country going to invest in the future of young people, or is it not? And is it going to provide access to higher education for people from all sorts of financial backgrounds? I think this is so important to the future of the country,” says Zimmer, who is also one of the leading champions of free expression on college campuses. On this episode of Big Brains, Zimmer how a scholarly career in mathematics fostered his deep ties to the University; his efforts to expand the sciences (including engineering) and arts and humanities; and developments for UChicago around the world, including a new center in Hong Kong. Subscribe to Big Brains on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher and Spotify, and rate and review the podcast.