PARKERSBURG - Resigning West Virginia University at Parkersburg President Marie Foster Gnage has been hired by Florida State College to be a downtown campus president.
Gnage, who announced in March she would not seek a renewal when her contract expires at the end of June, will head to Jacksonville, Fla., to become one of five regional presidents for Florida State College.
Gnage said the downtown campus is similar to WVU-P with an emphasis on adult students, a technology center and an early learning center. The campus serves 6,000-7,000 students and includes an English as a Second Language (ESL) immersion program and a program for the blind.
"I'm looking forward to it. Because it is an urban campus it will be a different experience for me," she said Monday. "It will give me the opportunity to try something new."
The WVU-P Board of Governors will announce Wednesday an interim president to take over the college while the board searches for a permanent replacement. The board meets at 5:45 p.m. Wednesday at the college's Jackson County Center in Ripley.
Gnage will retire June 30 and the interim president will begin July 1. Gnage said her new position at FSC will begin July 1.
"I'm excited about it, but at the same time I'm a bit sad because because I'm leaving WVU-Parkersburg after being here for 10 years," she said. "It's kind of home."
Even so, Gnage said she believes this is a good time to give the reins to a new leader for the campus which under her tenure has experienced dramatic growth in enrollment, course offerings and facilities.
"I've done my very best to grow the college and make it more of a college for the community," Gnage said. "I want to give the opportunity for someone else to take it to the next level."