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Leaders from LKN join governor’s commission on public universities


Nov. 30. Two Lake Norman higher education leaders have joined the newly formed Governor’s Commission on the Governance of Public Universities in North Carolina.

Thomas W. Ross Sr. of Davidson, the new co-chair, is the former president of the Volcker Alliance, president emeritus of the University of North Carolina System and president emeritus of Davidson College.


He previously served as a Superior Court Judge and director of the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.

Also appointed to the commission was former NC Rep. John Fraley of Mooresville as a member at-large. Fraley, who served in the state legislature from 2015 to 2020, is a current member of the UNC Board of Governors and serves as Board Chair of myFutureNC.

The news hook

Earlier this month, Gov. Roy Cooper signed an Executive Order establishing the Commission to advise the Office of the Governor and the public on the status of public higher education governance in North Carolina and on strategies to successfully position the state’s universities and colleges to meet the needs of future students.


Enrollments will fall

College enrollment fell by more than 1 million students during two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, and worse is yet to come.


The high school-age population will begin to shrink starting in 2025, and growing numbers of young Americans are choosing not to go to college, according to Dr. Franklin D. Gilliam Jr., chancellor of UNC Greensboro.

“Though a college degree remains the best path to economic mobility and community prosperity, Americans are growing increasingly skeptical of the value of higher education,” he said.



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