No-Confidence Motion Fails at Rensselaer Polytechnic

April 27, 2006

Faculty members at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Wednesday narrowly voted down a motion of no confidence in their president, Shirley Ann Jackson. The vote, 155 to 149, followed the widespread distribution of e-mail messages from faculty members that expressed “concern over management and allocation of the institute’s resources,” according to E. Bruce Nauman, a professor of chemical and biological engineering and past chairman of the faculty, who voted for the measure.

Ms. Jackson, who became RPI’s president in 1999, is leading a strategic overhaul of the institution, an effort called the Rensselaer Plan that includes some elements that have rankled faculty members. In a written statement of support for Ms. Jackson, the chairman of the institute’s Board of Trustees, Samuel F. Heffner, said: “The circumstances of dramatic change create challenges for all engaged.”