Higher Ed

Amid challenges, UNC System Interim President believes things are settling down

It’s graduation season for North Carolina college students – a time of hope and optimism for graduates.

The Interim President of the University of North Carolina System is also sounding optimistic as he looks ahead to the next few months.

In an interview with Higher Education Works this week, Dr. Bill Roper talks about the departures of UNC System President Margaret Spellings, UNC-Chapel Hill Chancellor Carol Folt and East Carolina University Chancellor Cecil Staton and the need to create a more stable operating environment:

“There’s always going to be some turnover,” he says. “But it is true, in some high-profile jobs in the last year or so, we’ve had substantial turnover. I think we are headed into a quieter phase, if I could put it that way, of less of that kind of turnover. That’s my earnest hope. That’s what I’m trying to produce.”

Roper also shared a few thoughts on getting more productivity out of the system while improving access to higher education.

“We need to do all of this for less money,” he says.
“Even before we get to ‘we wish we had more money,’ we need to show better return, more efficiency, more productivity to the people we serve for the large amount of money that they entrust to us already. The American public and surely the people of North Carolina have decided in large part that higher education just costs too darn much – and we ignore that to our peril.”

Watch a segment of the interview below or click here to read the full interview with Dr. Roper.

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