Head of Ohio Regents to step down

Rachel Abbey

The highest ranking higher education official in Ohio has announced his resignation.

Roderick G. W. Chu, the chancellor of the Board of Regents, will step down May 12, to head an initiative looking at the connection between higher education and the economy.

“I am excited about the opportunity to focus my skills and knowledge on an effort that I believe has tremendous potential to influence the direction of Ohio’s policies and economy,” Chu said in a statement. “This is the logical next step in my commitment to do all I can to improve the quality of life for all Ohioans.”

Chu is leaving the Regents to work at the Ralph Regula School of Computational Science, said Edmund Adams, chairman of the Ohio Board of Regents.

The school will be developing data to show a physical connection between higher education and the economy.

“It’s something the Board of Regents has wanted to do, but time hasn’t allowed,” Adams said.

According to a release from the school, they will find information to support the connection, such as how putting money into financial aid affects enrollment and graduation rates, and how those rates affect the economy in an area.

Chu was very active in raising awareness about the importance between economy and higher education, Adams said.

“He really promoted that, for a long time, before anyone was really listening and buying into the concept,” he said.

Chu accomplished a lot in his eight years, the longest term of any Ohio Board of Regents’ chancellor, said Bret Crow, assistant director of communications for the Board of Regents. Besides day-to-day activities, Chu worked with legislators on behalf of education, and even sat on the cabinet at the request of Gov. Bob Taft.

Vice Chancellor E. Garrison Walters has been appointed interim chancellor while the Regents organize a search committee to find a replacement, Adams said. Many of the Regents have been on university boards, so have gone through this process for presidents.

Contact administration reporter Rachel Abbey at [email protected].