Saint Petersburg College Downtown Center.
PHOTO COURTESY OF WIKIMEDIA
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) – A 30-year employee of St. Petersburg College rode an overwhelming tide of public support to be named the school’s first female and first black president.
The Tampa Bay Times reports (http://bit.ly/2rjECdX) that 53-year-old Tonjua Williams was named recently as the school’s new leader.
Williams will take the reins amid faculty discontent and financial unease, facing down a projected $6 million to $10 million shortfall with little support from a state Legislature that favored state universities this year. She also takes her place among the region’s institutional heavyweights, overseeing a school with some 40,000 students and nearly a dozen campuses and centers.
SPC, the state’s first two-year college, has grown into a school with more than 100 career-focused programs, including bachelor’s degree tracks far cheaper than those of state universities.