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WVU BOG announces Presidential Search Committee, approves FY25 financial plan

Oglebay Hall is shown on the left side of the screen while the right of the screen highlights campus in the summer.

The WVU Downtown area of campus in Morgantown is shown on a summer day in June. (WVU Photo/Jennifer Shephard)

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The West Virginia University Board of Governors endorsed a slate of 21 nominated individuals on Friday (June 21) to serve on the committee to select the University’s next president

The Ad Hoc Governance Committee recommended four BOG members and three faculty members to serve on the Presidential Search Committee, along with one student representative, one representative each from classified staff, deans, WVU Athletics, WVU Medicine, the WVU Foundation, the WVU Alumni Association, one representative for the regional campuses and three at-large representatives for a total of 18 voting Committee members. There will also be three ex-officio representatives, one from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission and two BOG chairs (2023-2025) for continuity. 

See the detailed slate, including names and positions.

“Choosing a president is an immense responsibility, and we were impressed by the quality of the nominees that were submitted,” said Dr. Patrice Harris, chair of the Ad Hoc Governance Committee.

The Board also endorsed the Presidential Search Committee Charge outlining the role and responsibilities of the Committee and its members, as well as the Presidential Search Committee Confidentiality Agreement and Code of Ethics.

During Friday’s regular BOG meeting, WittKieffer, the national firm selected in May to partner with the University in the presidential search, outlined the next steps in the process which will include a series of listening sessions with various groups through mid-September. Details will be announced in the coming weeks and updates will be available at presidentialsearch.wvu.edu.

A new president will come to WVU at a time of improving financial stability. The University has closed a projected structural budget shortfall and increased its cash on hand over the last year.

“WVU remains committed to strengthening the financial performance of the University and developing a strong fiscal budgeting process, maintaining adequate levels of cash and strengthening reserves to allow for future strategic investments,” Finance Committee Chair Kevin Craig said before the Board approved the Fiscal Year 2025 Financial Plan.

The Plan includes an approved $228 per semester tuition and fees increase for resident undergraduate students and $624 per semester for non-resident students. Resident graduate students will see a $252 per semester increase while tuition and fees for non-resident graduate students will increase by $639 per semester. To help offset these increases, student financial support will also grow proportionally.

“In fact, 50% of May 2023 resident graduates earning bachelor’s degrees graduated with zero debt, and we continue to fair very well when compared to our regional and Big 12 peers,” Chief Financial Officer Paula Congelio said.

Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Maryanne Reed told the Board summer school enrollments have remained relatively steady with an increased demand for online courses. Academic program updates at the WVU Institute of Technology and WVU Potomac State are moving forward as announced this spring, and the official launch of the new College of Creative Arts and Media is on track for July 1, as is the new Division for Land-Grant Engagement, comprising WVU Extension, WVU Center for Community Engagement and the renamed Davis College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Reed also shared an update on the search for a new campus president of Potomac State College.

“As mentioned previously, my office has engaged with Greenwood Asher and Associates to manage this search,” Reed said. “After several stakeholder meetings led by Greenwood Asher this spring, the position description was written; the search was launched; and the position was advertised. Since June 7, we already have received 30 applications in our pool, and many of these candidates have excellent credentials. Our goal is to have a new president in place at Potomac State by January.”

The annual faculty report featured a presentation about the WVU Country Roads Program which is garnering national attention as a first for West Virginia. Board members heard about record-breaking research activity and expenditures, and updates on several Faculty Senate initiatives.

In other Board action:

     ·      A new Mine Safety Practices and Health undergraduate certificate program was approved in the Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources;

     ·      Online graduate certificates in School Physical Activity Leadership, Sport Industry Leadership and Change Management, Advanced Sport Management Research, Athlete Talent Identification and Development, Athlete Empowerment through Positive Coaching, and Applied Sport Science in Coaching were approved within the College of Applied Human Sciences;

     ·      An Athletics project to develop a new WVU Baseball Hitting & Pitching Facility was approved.

View the June 21 BOG regular meeting agenda and meeting materials.

Current Vice-Chair Rick Pill will serve as BOG Chair starting July 1, Bob Reynolds will step into the secretary role, and Dr. Patrice Harris will become vice chair, chair of the Presidential Search Committee and retain her position as chair of the Ad Hoc Governance Committee.

President Gordon Gee thanked BOG Chair Taunja Willis Miller, former Chair and current member Tom Jones, Faculty Representative Stan Hileman and Student Representative and former Student Government Association President Madison Santmyer whose terms are ending for their service and dedication to the University. He also talked about the impact WVU has on communities across the state – something he sees firsthand during his annual summer county tour.

“By shaking hands with citizens, hearing their concerns and telling them how we are addressing state needs, we make our land-grant, flagship University a vital presence for the people we serve,” Gee said. “As we plant our gold and blue flag throughout the state, we are firmly staking the claim that we are—and always have been—West Virginia’s flagship institution.”

The next regular BOG meeting is scheduled for Sept. 20.

-WVU-

ak/6/21/24

MEDIA CONTACT: April Kaull
Executive Director of Communications
University Relations
304-293-3990; April.Kaull@mail.wvu.edu

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