EAST LANSING, MICH. - Some faculty leaders at Michigan State University are threatening to seek the resignations of the entire MSU Board of Trustees if it follows through with a reported plan to appoint John Engler interim president.
"Should the Board indeed appoint ex-Governor Engler, we will sadly be forced to bring a motion to hold a vote of No Confidence in the Board of Trustees to Academic Congress via electronic ballot," at-large faculty members of the MSU Steering Committee said in an open letter to the community on Tuesday.
"If this motion for a vote passes, a vote of No Confidence in the Board of Trustees will be held at the next Faculty Senate meeting," the letter continues. "If that vote of No Confidence passes, we will call on the entire Board of Trustees to resign immediately."
The Board of Trustees on Monday reportedly settled on Engler as interim president and another former governor, James Blanchard, as a senior advisor to work with government relations and legal affairs.
Those moves were expected to be made official at a board meeting set for 9 a.m. Wednesday, according to multiple sources with direct knowledge of the discussions, the Detroit Free Press reported.
Engler would take over from Lou Anna Simon, who resigned amid widespread criticism of her handling of the Larry Nassar case.
The steering committee is the leadership body within MSU’s academic governance structure.
The at-large faculty members of the committee said they were invited to a private meeting of the board on Monday and told the five trustees in attendance they believed appointing "a former governor with no academic leadership experience ... would not be the best way to heal the wounds of our community in this politically polarized climate."
"It appears that not only were none of our suggestions heeded .. we learned of their apparent decision to select Gov. Engler through public media," the letter said. "They seem to have selected, without appropriate consultation from the MSU community, an individual with no academic leadership experience as in interim president."
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