North Carolina is now on the hunt for new leaders of both its higher education systems, with today’s announcement that N.C. Community College President Scott Ralls is taking a job in Virginia.
The News & Observer’s Jane Stancill reported early this afternoon that Ralls is taking a new job to head the Northern Virginia Community College, a campus with 75,000 students.
In North Carolina, Rawls has headed the 58-campus state community college system that serves 850,000 students since 2008. He will start his new job in September. (Click here to read the announcement from the Virginia community college.)
From the N&O:
Ralls has led the North Carolina community college system since 2008. The system had phenomenal growth — 28 percent — in the first three years of his tenure, which was during the depths of the recession.
At the same time, the system experienced a budget crunch, all while embarking on a strategy to revamp curriculum, improve graduation rates and forge new transfer agreements with the state’s university system.
A former president of Craven Community College in New Bern and Havelock, Ralls said Thursday he had always intended to return to a campus setting, where he could interact with students and faculty.
“That’s who I am and where my heart is,” Ralls said Thursday. “I’ve always aspired to go back to a campus.”
Ralls’ forthcoming departure comes at the state’s university system is also looking for its new leader, after the UNC Board of Governors moved in January to push out President Tom Ross.
UNC Board of Governors Chairman John Fennebresque denied that politics played a roll in Ross’ ouster, but no reasons other than a general desire for change have been given.
Ross is staying in his position until January, and a successor is expected to be announced this fall.