MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WBOY) — During a meeting on Wednesday, the West Virginia University Faculty Assembly passed two resolutions—a vote of no confidence in university President Gordon Gee and another to freeze the academic transformation process.
The resolutions do not have authority within the WVU Board of Governors but rather give the board an idea of what faculty think on certain issues. Following the two landslide votes, Taunja Willis-Miller, Chair of the WVU Board of Governors, released the following statement.
The West Virginia University Board of Governors appreciates the faculty members who shared their perspectives at today’s University Faculty Assembly meeting regarding consideration of a no-confidence resolution for President E. Gordon Gee and a resolution calling for a freeze of the University’s Academic Transformation process.
We acknowledge the passage of these votes.
The Board of Governors unequivocally supports the leadership of President Gee and the strategic repositioning of WVU and rejects the multiple examples of misinformation that informed these resolutions. The University is transforming to better reflect the needs of today, and we must continue to act boldly. President Gee has shown time and again he is not afraid to do the difficult work required.
The challenges we are facing right now are not unique to WVU. The Board is determined to address the challenges head-on and directed the administration to address Academic Transformation. The Board maintains that we must do this work to remain competitive and relevant as we become an even stronger university.
Though the University has been working to maximize resources and improve efficiencies since 2015, the Board outlined specifically the need for academic transformation in December 2020. It is important to note that, although the structural budget deficit may have added to the urgency, this transformation process – particularly academic transformation – would still be taking place. We know the process is critical to ensure a strong future for the University, and we required strict timelines which the president and the leadership team are meeting. The Board of Governors will continue to work with university leadership, faculty, staff and students to move quickly and efficiently.
We do recognize that this is a difficult process. We feel for those who may be affected. We realize this is not easy and none of this was entered into lightly. We remain committed to the work of transforming this beloved University, and together we must continue to focus on our highest priority of educating our students and serving the people of West Virginia.Taunja Willis-Miller, Chair, WVU Board of Governors
At this point, the Board of Governors vote on the recommended academic transformation cuts is scheduled for Sept. 15.