West Virginia University President James Clements is leaving the university for South Carolina-based Clemson University.
The announcement came Monday morning at Clemson University's Board of Trustees meeting. On Wednesday, Clements announced that he will be leaving WVU to start work at Clemson University sometime around January 1, 2014.
After holding an emergency meeting Wednesday, the WVU Board of Governors did not name an interim president to take over on Jan. 1. The Board authorized Chair James Dailey II to make a selection for interim president, which the board will then vote on. The BOG also authorized Dailey to develop a procedure to search for a permanent replacement for Clements. The interim will not be eligible for the permanent job, according to officials. The Board will reconvene in a special meeting at 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 21.
Clements joined WVU as its 23rd president in June 2009. Prior to his time at WVU, Dr. Clements served as provost and vice president for academic affairs at Towson University in Maryland.
"Since the hiring of Jim Clements in 2009, West Virginia University has experienced unprecedented success in many areas - private giving, enrollment, academics, research funding, health care, community service, economic development and so much more," said Dailey in a statement, "Of course he will say it is because he has had a great team, but it's more than that."
"I wasn't looking to leave WVU", said Clements in a letter to the WVU community following his announcement, "In fact, when I first was called I simply responded that I love WVU, the students, faculty and staff and the community."
"On behalf of the West Virginia University Student Body, the Student Government Association would like to thank President Jim Clements for his leadership and service to the University," said WVU Student Boy President, Ryan Campione, in a statement released Monday. "His dedication to the student body has led to numerous positive changes for students, including an expansion of the Evansdale Campus, the addition of new club athletic fields and a significant increase in academic scholarships for students," Campione continued. To read the statement in its entirety, click here.