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Fort Valley State University president steps down | News

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Fort Valley State University president steps down

Ivelaw Griffith, the current president of Fort Valley State University, announced he's stepping down June 30, after less than two years on the job.

According to a University System of Georgia news release, Griffith became president in 2013.

The news release does not explain Griffith's departure.

But last year, Moody's Investor's Service gave Fort Valley State University a BAA 1 rating, which is considered medium.

Moody's says the rating was based on FVSU's declining enrollment, weak operating performance and minimal resources.

And in September, the school said it was cutting dozens of jobs and leaving positions vacant due to a dramatic drop in enrollment. The school said they were facing a $7.1 million deficit.

The school had 3,896 students in 2011; they projected around 2,400 last fall.

The Board of Regents described Griffith's accomplishments in the past two years:

• Raised admissions standards to university level;

• Established the Honors Program and Undergraduate Research Program;

• Designed and implemented a new student recruiting plan and process; and,

• Signed key articulation agreements with institutions, including Central Georgia Technical College, Albany Technical College and Georgia Military College, aimed at encouraging students to complete their bachelor's degree at FVSU upon completion of their two-year associate's degree programs.

Hank Huckaby, the USG Chancellor, recognized Griffith's leadership skills throughout his time at FVSU.

"Dr. Griffith has overseen key changes in Fort Valley's administration and operations to better serve students, he said. "On behalf of the University System, I thank Dr. Griffith for his contributions, and we wish him and his family the very best in his future work."

The search for the next FVSU president will be announced within the coming months. Griffith replaced Larry Rivers, who stepped down in June 2013.

Before coming to Fort Valley, Griffith has been provost at York College since 2007, he has also served as provost while meeting his tenured professor duties at Radford University in Radford, Va. He was a professor of political science.

He was also budget dean for the College of Arts and Sciences and Sciences at Florida International University in Miami. He was also dean at FIU Honors College.

Griffith, a specialist on Caribbean security, drugs and crime, also served as a consultant to Canada's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, the United States Agency for International Development. He has published seven books and has another out in 2014, entitled, "Challenged Sovereignty."


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