The University of Illinois may have an interim chancellor as soon as next week.
Chancellor Phyllis Wise says "external issues" fueled her decision to step down, calling those issues a "distraction" to the U of I's goals. University spokesman Tom Hardy wouldn't say if Wise was asked to resign.
"The president accepted Chancellor Wise's resignation, and understands the reasons that she cited, and commended her on her energy and commitment to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for the last four years," Hardy says.
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According to a news release from the U of I, president Timothy Killeen says, "“Chancellor Wise’s energy and commitment to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have never flagged. In addition to other accomplishments too numerous to list, her vision and advocacy for a new College of Medicine represents a major contribution and provides for a lasting legacy.” Killeen is expected to name a temporary chancellor while the search starts for a permanent replacement.
In that same news release, Wise says, "...external issues have arisen over the past year that have distracted us from the important tasks at hand. I have concluded that these issues are diverting much needed energy and attention from our goals. I therefore believe the time is right for me to step aside. I will resign from the chancellor's position effective August 12, 2015, and will resume my roles as a member of the faculty. I look forward to rededicating my efforts to teaching, research and service."
Hardy would not say what "external issues" Wise was referring to.