Higher Ed Board buys out Shirvani ContractThe state Board of Higher Education is buying out the contract of University System Chancellor Hamid Shirvani. The board voted Monday to release Shirvani from his three-year deal, which he signed more than a year ago. Terms of the buyout were not announced.
The state Board of Higher Education is buying out the contract of University System Chancellor Hamid Shirvani. The board voted Monday to release Shirvani from his three-year deal, which he signed more than a year ago. Terms of the buyout were not announced.
The board made the move after meeting in executive session in Medora, where the group is holding its annual retreat. Shirvani has been blasted by some students, faculty and lawmaker for his management style. Shirvani say he was given a mandate to overhaul the higher education system and fix problems, including low graduation rates. Board president Duaine Espegard says Shirvani felt he had accomplished as much as he could, and asked the board to release him from his contract so he "could move on."
Shirvani signed the three year contract more than a year ago, so the buyout will be for the total amount of the two years he did not complete as Chancellor. Shirvani is paid more than 300,000 thousand dollars annually. Shirvani has been the center of attention the last several months because students and faculty didn't agree with his management style.
Duaine Espegard, Higher Education Board President: "It's always difficult when you have to change your career plans probably not what he expected to do, and we appreciate that and we respect the fact that he probably isn't feeling real great about it, but it is what it is."
Peter Johnson, UND Spokesman: "This is a university that's seen a lot of change in the last five years. There's a new president compared to what their was five years ago. Most of our deans have turned over. We no longer have the nickname and logo that we have. So we've seen enormous change. We know how to adapt to change. That's what we'll do. We'll adapt and we'll move forward."
Espegard says the board will start looking for a new Chancellor immediately. Shirvani will remain in his position until July 15th. Voters will decide in November 2014 on whether or not they want to change the Higher Education System. Until then, the Board still stands by a centralized system.