The president of Wright State University resigned last week -- almost four months sooner than he had planned to retire from the institution -- in light of a budget crisis at the Ohio college, The Dayton Daily News reported.
“We have a substantial undertaking to bring our budget into alignment with our revenues,” said David Hopkins, outgoing president of Wright State, in an email to faculty, staff and students on Friday.
In lieu of the $432,000 salary he would have earned in the year following his retirement, Hopkins will now be eligible for an annual faculty salary of $200,000 in the College of Education and Human Services. He will still receive $150,000 in deferred compensation.
Cheryl Schrader has been selected as the next president of Wright State. She will take office July 1. In the meantime, the Board of Trustees chose Curtis McCray to serve as interim president. McCray has previously worked with the university as a consultant for its operational review.
The budget crisis that has consumed Wright State over the last few years stems from overspending, officials told The Dayton Daily. This year, the university is projected to spend $40 million beyond what it earned.
“That cannot continue under Dr. McCray’s leadership,” said Michael Bridges, chairman of the Board of Trustees. “You have to live within that budget.”
The trustees hope to bring the university out of as much debt as possible before Schrader takes over this summer.
Last year, the university laid off 23 people to help cut down on costs. An announcement about additional layoffs is expected next month. Wright State has also been under a hiring freeze since February, when Hopkins instituted it.
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