Another college president is out in Mississippi, as institutions across the state see high executive turnover. This time, it’s Carmen Walters, the president of Tougaloo College, who will depart the private, historically Black college at the end of the month, according to Mississippi Today.
The news organization reported that it was unclear if Walters was pushed out. Walters’s resignation comes amid a campaign by alumni who have called for her to step down, raising concerns around declining enrollment and employee retention, among other issues.
Though Walters initially called the group’s claims false and emphasized that the critics were not part of the official Tougaloo College Alumni Association, she told Inside Higher Ed last month that she was meeting with alumni to open lines of communication.
Walters is at least the seventh college president in the state to leave abruptly within the past year. Of those, four have departed public institutions: Alcorn State University, Delta State University and Jackson State University. While the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning Board of Trustees has largely stayed quiet on those abrupt exits, it did reveal via board documents last month that Alcorn State University president Felecia Nave was fired.
Tougaloo College has appointed an interim while it conducts a search for a new president.