Margaret Spellings, the President of the UNC System, will step down effective March 1, 2019 according to the Board of Governors chairman Harry Smith.

The Board of Governors, which oversees 17 North Carolina universities, announced an emergency meeting Thursday afternoon to discuss “personal matters.”

That emergency meeting took place Friday morning at the UNC System Office located in Chapel Hill, lasting just over two hours in a closed, executive session.

After the meeting, the Board of Governors announced that Margaret Spellings will resign her duties effective March 1st, 2019 — just three years into her five year contract with the UNC System.

When asked about her departure from the UNC System at a press conference Friday, Spellings said, “It was the right time for me.”

Spellings went on to add, “I came into this position intent on creating a culture of higher expectations and that shift is underway. But times change and those changes demand new leaders and new approaches.”

In the Board of Governors emergency meeting Friday, they agreed to a payment package in which she will receive a salary until March 1st along with a $500,000 payout and $35,000 in relocation expenses. Spellings will also receive a $77,500 retirement package.

The Board of Governors, appointed by the North Carolina General Assembly, now has to find a replacement for the 28 member group.

The Board has faced many struggles over the past few months. They came under fire this summer when they delayed in finding a candidate for the Western Carolina Chancellor position. For many weeks, the Board was dead-locked in “heated discussion.”

The struggles in the Board of Governors led to policy changes in the past months to help improve operations.

The next board meeting is scheduled for November 9 at the UNC System Office in Chapel Hill.

When asked about the situation, the Chancellor’s Office at UNC Charlotte was not immediately available to return a comment on the situation.

Jacob is the Assistant News Editor for the NinerTimes, as well as involved in the Student Government Association at UNC Charlotte.