UMass-Amherst chancellor announces resignation

aUniversity of Massachusetts Chancellor David Scott announced his resignation today, effective June 30. He became the chancellor of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst seven years ago.

In a prepared statement, Scott said he’s stepping down because the University is on the verge of completing a six-year, $125 million fundraising campaign one year ahead of schedule. He called the effort a “significant development” and believed it should wrap-up his tenure.

“The University has put us in touch with a wonderful group of students and alumni, faculty and staff, friends, colleagues and supporters. It has also been a privilege to serve a University committed to public service and to have worked with [UMass] President William Bulger and members of the Board of Trustees who embody the highest ideals of public service,” he said.

“While we have begun a planning process for the next 10 years, it is crucial that the next administration is deeply involved in developing and implementing these plans,” he said.

During his tenure, Scott steered UMass-Amherst through some of its leanest years, when the school’s budget was deeply affected by financial troubles.

“The massive economic downturn of the early 1990s wreaked havoc with the University’s budget, but David Scott was able to persevere and lead the campus to greatness. His stewardship will be remembered and valued,” said University President William Bulger. He pointed to the school’s rising academic reputation, performance and $78 million in capital spending on the Amherst campus as Scott’s greatest achievements.

Scott will take a year’s paid leave. He made no mention of his future plans.

A nuclear physicist by training, Scott was born on an island off the coast of Scotland inhabited by about 100 people. He first became known for his research on the high speed collisions of heavy nuclei, which is believed to simulate conditions in the early universe.

Prior to coming to Amherst in 1993, Scott served as provost and vice president of academic affairs at Michigan State University.

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