Virginia Intermont president resigns

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According to VI, Phillips (above) resigned for personal reasons.

E. Clorisa Phillips has resigned as president of struggling Virginia Intermont College in Bristol.

The board of trustees said the move was effective immediately. The board named Art Rebrovick of Compass Executives of Nashville, Tennessee, as the college’s interim president and restructuring agent.

“Art has already been a huge help in guiding us through this past month of operations,” Kathleen W. Obrien, chair of the board of trustees, said in a statement. “He has been on site several times to meet with staff and has a good understanding of the issues at hand.  His business acumen and expertise will help us determine the next best course of action.”

The fate of the school is uncertain. An attempt to merge Virginia Intermont with Webber International University in Florida fell through in April.

Virginia Intermont has been fighting to keep its accreditation.

The school had been searching for a merger partner since losing an appeal to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on College (SACSCOC) and filing suit against the regional accrediting organization.

SACSCOC had raised concerns about the college’s finances in voting to remove Virginia Intermont from membership in the organization.

The college has stressed that SACSCOC’s actions are prompted by its finances, not its academics.

The school said Monday that it has set up programs to help undergraduates continue their educations with other colleges.

In accepting Phillips’ resignation, Obrien said the board appreciated her “efforts, passion, and her contributions to VI during her almost four years as president. We know that she put her heart and her soul into this school and cared very deeply for the students, faculty and staff who have made VI the special school it has been.”

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