The Columbus State University faculty has given President Tim Mescon and Provost Inessa Levi votes of no confidence.
Mescon, who has been at the university 21 months, had 62 percent of the voting faculty express no confidence. Mescon's totals were 95 expressed confidence and 157 no confidence.
Levi, who has been at CSU for 10 months, had 77 percent of the voting faculty express no confidence. Levi's totals were 57 expressed confidence and 196 no confidence.
More than 86 percent of the faculty — or 253 full-time faculty members — voted Tuesday and Wednesday. There were 293 eligible voters.
The votes are symbolic and have no direct impact on Mescon’s and Levi’s jobs. Mescon can only be terminated by the University System of Georgia Board of Regents. Levi reports to Mescon, who had the final say in her hiring.
It took nearly two hours Thursday morning for attorney and former Columbus mayor Frank Martin to count the votes. Faculty senate Executive Officer Susan Hrach and CSU Assistant Vice President for University Relations John Lester observed as Martin counted.
The faculty senate called for the vote April 5, citing seven major concerns with the top two administrators.
-- The promotion and tenure evaluation processes.
-- The position and status of the library within the university structure.
-- The administrative searches (at the levels of Provost and Deans).
-- The reorganization of academic colleges and departments.
-- The creation and composition of university-level committees and task forces.
-- The handling of personnel matters.
-- The faculty role in institutional governance.
"The vote, I guess, confirms the faculty has some concerns with the upper administration leadership," Hrach said.
The strong faculty turnout also makes a statement, Hrach said.
"That says to me the faculty at Columbus State University are absolutely committed and invested in the future of the university," she said.
The Ledger-Enquirer will continue to follow this story throughout the day.