The Sad Saga of South Carolina State University

scsu copyLast month, a legislative subcommittee in South Carolina voted to close South Carolina State University for two years. While this proposal is now off the table, the fate of the university and its leadership is still up in the air. Here are the latest developments:

A circuit court judge ordered the board of trustees of South Carolina State University not to fire suspended university president Thomas Elzey. The judge noted that the legislature was currently considering firing all of the trustees. So the judge ruled that whoever the legislature designated as the new governing board should decide Dr. Elzey’s fate.

The South Carolina Senate voted 41-1 to replace the board of trustees with a governing body appointed by lawmakers and Governor Nikki Haley. But the South Carolina House wants the authority to be invested in the state’s Budget and Control Board.

PresidentThomasElzeyIn another development, President Elzey filed a lawsuit against the university saying that the board did not honor his four-year contract. He seeks $400,000 that he would be owed if he was able to complete his tenure plus additional money for the humiliation and emotional stress he has endured.

The board of trustees has discussed reaching a financial settlement with Dr. Elzey.

Update: President Elzey was fired on March 16 after a court ruled that the board had the power to do so.

Related Articles


  1. The board of trustees is behaving like the Republican Clown car and needs to be replaced. How many of them are sincerely interested in the well being of State, how many make financial contributions to the school, how many have access to financial resources? From what I understand, their only interest is free football tickets.

    A big change is needed.

  2. The “sad saga of South Carolina State University” is that you have a cabal of “so-called degree holding” and “so-called Black group affiliated” individuals who are: 1) more concerned about their lofty title (e.g., Board of Regents Members); and 2) not so inclined to making decisions in the best interests of South Carolina State University. In fact, similar claims can be made against the entire Black community. Case in point, the Black community has more so-called Blacks with degree now as compared to a mere 40 years ago. Yet, our overall conditionality has not significantly improved. Something’s very wrong with this picture.

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Three African Americans Appointed to New Academic Positions

Leon Prieto, Kofi Afrifah, and Andrea Moore have been appointed to new academic positions at Clayton University, Bowie State University, and Savannah State University, respectively.

Historic HBCU Landmark Revitalized Through National Park Service Grant

Through three restoration grants totaling $2 million, the Rosenwald Practice School and Principal House will be fully restored, becoming the new home for the Northeastern North Carolina African American Research and Cultural Heritage Institute.

Five Black Leaders Appointed to Administrative Positions

Here is this week’s roundup of African American who have been appointed to new administrative positions at colleges and universities throughout the United States. If you have news for our appointments section, please email the information to

North Carolina A&T University Establishes Research Partnership with Collins Aerospace

“There are direct relations to the research we do in the College of Engineering and the mission purpose of Collins Aerospace,” said Stephanie Luster-Teasley, interim dean of the College of Engineering at North Carolina A&T State University. “Being able to partner with Collins really gives our students the opportunities for hands-on research at each level – undergraduate and graduate.”

Featured Jobs