COLUMBIA, S.C. — The University of South Carolina Board says it's making changes and self-evaluating after the controversial election of General Robert Caslen earlier this year.
The University will face an accreditation compliance review with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges in December.
Allegations, including from a current trustee, alleged Governor Henry McMaster was overly involved in Caslen’s selection.
USC Board Chairman John Von Lehe Jr. sent a letter to SACSCOC explaining changes the Board is making after the controversy.
Faculty Senate Chair Mark Cooper weighed in on the letter.
“As the chair of the Faculty senate I think the letter is a step in a positive direction. It seems to clearly indicate that there are some issues the Board will need to address and to express a willingness to address them,” Cooper said.
In the letter Von Lehe Jr. wrote, “The Board of Trustees acknowledges that external factors in its recent presidential search process created a perception that it was impacted by undue influence."
So, Von Lehe Jr. said the Board brought in a consultant to review procedures and policies.
The Chairman writes about new changes:
- Clarify roles and responsibilities of the board and individual board members
- Improve institutional and system governance
- Build stronger board governance practices and board leadership
- Develop comprehensive orientation and annual education programs for board members
You can read the letter here:
“I think they have addressed most of what they can address as a Board. There are some other matters with respect to how the Board is constituted, who constitutes it, the process through which the board gets created that aren't really up to our board,” Cooper said.
SACSCOC plans on reviewing the University's compliance at its December board meeting and the University will get a decision a couple weeks later.