After a two-year layoff, it looks University of Akron is ready to 'play ball' here in the near future.
The school is looking to restore the men's baseball team and add a women's lacrosse team for the 2019-20 academic year.
University President Matthew Wilson joined the Sam and Brad Show Tuesday afternoon to talk about the recommendation which will be presented to the Board of Trustees October 11.
Akron disbanded the program after the 2015 season amid financial issues.
The University of Akron Board of Trustees voted unanimously Wednesday night to remove the "interim" tag and make it official, naming Matthew Wilson the President of the University.
Wilson was named Interim President back on July 11, 2016, after a tumultuous two years at the university under then President Scott Scarborough. At the time of that appointment, the Board of Trustees put five primary responsibilities on Wilson's plate, the two most important being improving enrollment numbers and improving student retention and relationships with faculty and staff.
In their announcement Wednesday, the board said that Wilson is well on his way to meeting or exceeding all of the goals they set for his term.
Wilson, who was formerly the Dean of the College of Law at the University of Akron, will see his term run through June 30, 2018, per the board.
Also in the meeting, the Board of Trustees removed the "interim" prefix on Sr. Vice President and Provost Dr. Rex Remsier.
Below is the release from the University of Akron Website:
The University’s Trustees voted today to name Matthew J. Wilsonthe University’s 17th president and Dr. Rex Ramsier as senior vice president and provost. Both had been serving in those roles on an interim basis.
Before the votes, Board Chair Roland H. Bauer praised the work done by both.
“In the months since (Wilson’s interim) appointment, he has brought new energy and enthusiasm to all corners of the campus and the community,” Bauer said. “He is personally visiting area high schools – 20 so far with another two dozen scheduled the rest of this semester – talking with students and engaging with principals and counselors to help with our recruitment and enrollment efforts. He has had well over sixty meetings with donors, business and community leaders and public officials. He is conducting “town halls” with the colleges and academic units to foster free-flowing conversations. And, as has been well documented, he has actively engaged with students in the usual and some not-so-usual ways, such as basketball contests and late night email exchanges to provide guidance to students who have asked for help. As he says it so well… ‘It’s all about the students.’”
Speaking about Ramsier, Bauer said, “In similar fashion, stabilizing the academic leadership of the University is critical to our success going forward. Dr. Ramsier’s depth of experience as a faculty member and administrator, his personal devotion to the University as an alumnus, and his broad knowledge of national accrediting agencies and their procedures have secured the confidence of the Board as well. We recognize that as provost, he serves an important ‘gatekeeper’ function to both oversee and push forward the academic mission of the University.”
Read more at UAkron.edu.
The University of Akron will reportedly decide on whether or not they'll make Interim President Matthew Wilson the university's 17th President.
A special meeting of the U of A Board of Trustees is scheduled for Wednesday, October 19, at 4:30 p.m., to discuss the matter.
Wilson has been with the University of Akron since 2014 when he was hired as Dean of the College of Law. He was named interim president back in July after former President Scott Scarborough was dismissed after only two years on the job. During his time on the job, Wilson has already made a significant impact, establishing a direct relationship with incoming students and upperclassmen. As part of his effort to better connect to University of Akron students, Wilson even gave out his personal cellphone number at a meeting with students on campus.
At Wednesday's meeting, the Board of Trustees will also consider removing the interim tag on Senior Vice President and Provost Rex Ramsier.
The head of the University of Akron's Experiential Learning (EXL) Center submitted his letter of resignation today. Interim UA President Matthew Wilson confirmed that he received an email from EXL founding director and Priceline.com co-founder Jeff Hoffman stating that he would be stepping down at the end of the month.
"We wish Jeff the best," said Wilson "Part of Jeff's letter to me was very sincere and very kind, offering to continue to assist as we move forward so that's very encouraging."
But there's no word on what will happen to the career-focused program that was launched earlier this year.
"In terms of whether or not it's going to stick around in its own current form or fashion, that's something that we're going to need to explore."