Can a President Emeritus Take a Leave of Absence?

ACADEME BLOG

Yesterday’s Columbus Dispatch included a report that Gordon Gee, President Emeritus of Ohio State University, has agreed to become Interim President at West Virginia University. There is a news conference scheduled at West Virginia University this morning of this afternoon, but I am assuming that the Dispatch would not have printed the story without feeling confident about the credibility of the source.

This turn in Gee’s career is perhaps not a total surprise, given that he will be returning to where his presidential career began more than three decades ago. He has since served as President of Colorado, Brown, Ohio State, Vanderbilt, and, again, Ohio State. It is not very common for someone to make a career out of being a president at a succession of universities–simply because such a position is usually the capstone to an administrative career and most administrators still pass first through the academic ranks. But…

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