WVU Board of Governors approves tuition hikes, presidential search committee membership

MORGANTOWN – WVU’s Board of Governors approved tuition and fee hikes for the coming year, along with a slate of names for the presidential search committee. The BOG also heard from presidential search consultant WittKieffer about what’s ahead in the process.

Tuition hikes

The tuition hikes were included in the Fiscal Year 2025 budget approved by the BOG.

Undergraduate tuition and fees for residents will rise by $228, from $4,824 to $5,052; and for non-residents, by $624, from $13,680 to $14,304. These are increases of 4.7% and 4.5%, respectively. Board materials note that for the past five years, the average hike for residents has been 2.41%, $113; and for non-residents, 2.48%, $329.

For resident graduate students, tuition and fees will rise by $252, 4.6%, from $5,454 to $5,706. For non-resident graduate students, the hike will be $639, 4.5%, from $14,130 to $14,769.

It wasn’t discussed during the meeting, but board materials comment, “These tuition increases are necessary to cover increased costs due to inflation and continue to invest in excellence within the institution’s core academic mission.”

Presidential search committee

The presidential search committee will have 21 members: 18 voting and three ex-officio (non-voting).

The voting members were chosen to represent the BOG (four members), faculty (three members), classified staff, students, the deans, Athletics, WVU Medicine, the WVU Foundation, the Alumni Association and the regional campuses (one from each), and three at-large.

The non-voting members are the new and immediate-past BOG chairs and the Higher Education Policy Commission chancellor.

The BOG also approved a search committee charge, which says, “Choosing a president is an immense responsibility,” and notes that the committee is a recommending body only – the final decision falls to the BOG. A committee confidentiality agreement and code of ethics also were approved.

WittKieffer

The BOG approved the hiring of the WittKieffer consulting firm during its May meeting. WittKieffer is based in metro Chicago and has led more than 145 presidential and chancellor searches over the past five years.

WVU is paying the WittKieffer a standard $225,000 professional fee plus a $10,000 data technology fee that relates to access for WittKieffer’s database for the candidate search, as well as verification and compliance checks, which are necessary to the process, WVU told The Dominion Post.

Melody Rose, one of four WittKieffer consultants who will work with the committee, presented an overview on the search process.

The WittKieffer team will meet soon with the search committee, at a date to be announced. The team will then meet with community members through listening sessions with the WVU community, from July through mid-September. “This will be a very critical time” to hear from all the constituency groups on what they are looking for in a leader, she said.

Then, working with the search committee, WittKieffer will develop a leadership profile used to recruit the candidate pool and bring that to the BOG for approval.

In mid-September, the position will be announced and the application process will begin. WittKieffer, with BOG approval, will place ads and finalize the search strategy. They will be out in the market for about 10 weeks.

During the fall, the search committee will screen and interview candidates. Next spring, WittKieffer will conduct due diligence on the candidates, the BOG will conduct finalist interviews and then choose the 27th president, to succeed current President Gordon Gee, who will retire June 30, 2025.

Rose also encouraged the WVU community to email WittKieffer at [email protected] with questions, thoughts about what they’re looking for, and presidential candidate nominations. “We often find that some of our strongest candidates come through nominations with the community because you know your institution best.”

Regional campus transformation

WVU Provost Maryann Reed updated the BOG on the academic transformation process at WVU Tech and Potomac State College, for the board to vote on and approve later in the meeting.

They’ve completed the program portfolio process, she said. At both combined, 50 academic majors were reviewed. Five were recommended for discontinuation; 11 majors were combined into cooperative programs; and 23 were assigned a range of actions. No faculty positions were cut.

Here in Morgantown, she told the board, the official launches of the new College of Creative Arts and Media, and the new Division for Land Grant Engagement – resulting from the combination of the Davis College of Agriculture and Natural Resources with WVU Extension – are set for July 1.

Email: [email protected]