Amanda Betts – Staff Writer
CLARION, Pa.- Clarion University President Dr. Karen Whitney has decided to decline pursuing the position as president at Florida Gulf Coast University. She will remain at Clarion University.
At the beginning of this process, Whitney was intrigued by the idea of taking her skills and putting them to use in a larger community in southwest Florida and found the opportunity to be of interest. After debating the decision, she came to the conclusion, however, that she would rather continue to use those skills at Clarion. She feels that she has learned and accomplished many things as the university’s president and hopes to continue making progress.
As far as changes that will affect the university, she hopes to assure students that no excessive changes will be made to Clarion University.
“[I] remain committed to Clarion University [and] there will be no change in leadership,” she said. She plans to continue with the projects she has had in mind for Clarion.
Whitney plans to “work hard to advance Clarion University as the most professionally accredited transformative university in the state system.”
She intends to work closely on projects including the upcoming changes to the general education requirements (for which she will work closely with Interim Provost Dr. Todd Pfannestiel) and the anti-bullying campaign #Day1Declaration. She remains passionate about her ideas and wants to make even more progress.
The impact Clarion University has on Clarion County and the surrounding communities continues to be significant, and Whitney intends to “continue to work closely with the western Pennsylvania community to meet the future professional workforce needs of our region.”
Before the withdrawal of her application, however, the community began to discuss the possibility of Whitney leaving Clarion University and moving on to the larger university in Florida.
According to an exploreclarion.com article posted on Nov. 15, Whitney was one of 10 prospective candidates for the job. She was quoted in the article saying, “I love Clarion, and will always consider myself a Golden Eagle.”
Another article also released on exploreclarion.com reported that Whitney withdrew her application.