DURHAM, (AP) — The chancellor of North Carolina Central University is stepping down next month.
Charlie Nelms told his senior staff about the decision Thursday. Nelms will retire from the school Aug. 6 after five years as chancellor.
The 65-year-old Nelms says his time at the Durham school has been one of the most fulfilling times of his career.
But he says it's time to take a break. Nelms said in an email to the campus that he wants to spend the rest of his career helping students at historically black colleges and universities.
University of North Carolina President Tom Ross says Nelms has made what he called extraordinary" contributions to the academic quality and stature of the school.
Ross named Durham attorney Charles Becton as interim chancellor.
On its website, NC Central lists the following accomplishments during Helms' tenure:
Developing and implementing a campus-wide Quality Service Initiative (QSI), which has received national recognition from the College and University Personnel Association
Raising admission requirements and academic progression standards;
Strengthening infrastructure with particular attention to financial controls, technology, campus aesthetics and residential life
Increasing online course offerings by 50 percent
Establishing the University’s first Ph.D. program in more than 50 years; the Ph.D. degree in Integrated Biosciences will enroll its first cohort this fall
Transitioning the institution from Division II to Division I in athletics
Overseeing the institution while it was rated the number one public HBCU for two consecutive years by U.S. News and World Report
Constructing a new residence hall, the Nursing building and a parking deck
Reaffirming the University’s accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools
Obtaining membership in the American Association of Law Schools;
Receiving record funding in support of Science, Math and Technology (STEM) initiatives
Establishing the University College to place increased emphasis of student retention and academic success
Creating the Centennial Scholars Program aimed to increase African American male retention
Additional information from SGRToday.com
Establishing the Division of Research and Economic Development
Managing a comprehensive academic program review and restructuring