Vermont State Colleges System picks new chancellor

Published: Jul. 6, 2020 at 11:55 AM EDT
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The Vermont State Colleges System has a new chancellor.

The VSCS Board of Trustees Monday voted unanimously to appoint interim Chancellor Sophie Zdatny as the next chancellor. Zdatny, a six-year veteran with the organization, has been serving as interim chancellor since late April when Jeb Spaulding announced his resignation.

Trustees met Monday afternoon to offer Zdatny the role with a renewable one-year contract.

She'll have a tough job in front of her. VSCS has faced declining enrollment and financial challenges over the years that were exacerbated by the pandemic. Three campuses were slated for closure under a proposal floated earlier this spring by former chancellor Jeb Spaulding, but after a major backlash from students and faculty, Spaulding shelved the plan and then resigned.

Before the pandemic hit, the VSC system was already looking at a nearly $10 million deficit this year alone. A recent report to state lawmakers recommends allocating up to $40 million to fill the gap.