On June 10 the University of Virginia’s governing board shocked the campus community when it issued a short, cryptic statement announcing the resignation of the school’s popular president, Teresa Sullivan. In the statement, the head of the board, Rector Helen Dragas, thanked Sullivan for her service during her two years on the job, but noted, “In a rapidly changing and highly pressurized external environment in both health care and academia, we believe that the university needs to remain at the forefront of change.” In the two weeks that followed, a professor resigned in protest, the board’s vice-rector stepped down and students and faculty held rallies in support of Sullivan on campus. (Someone even spray-painted the world “GREED” on the columns of the school’s famed Rotunda building.) The chaos intensified, and speculation over what prompted Sullivan’s ouster swirled until June 26, when the board turned on its heels, voting unanimously to reinstate the president. “It’s time to bring the university family back together,” Dragas said.
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