Former South Carolina State University President Dr. Thomas Elzey
Former South Carolina State University President Thomas Elzey will receive $312,000 from the university, according to a statement released by current board Chairman Charles S. Way Jr.
Elzey will also receive an additional $20,000 to recoup legal fees, the statement said.
“In making this decision, we are not passing judgment on the parties or the circumstances that led to the lawsuit, i.e., Thomas Elzey’s performance as president or the former board’s decision to terminate his employment; rather, we are electing to put this matter behind us and concentrate on South Carolina State University’s future rather than undergoing the expense, disruption and inconvenience of possibly prolonged litigation,” Way said in a statement.
The decision seeks to settle a wrongful termination lawsuit filed by Elzey in March.
Way acknowledged the “formidable challenges” Elzey inherited as incoming president of the institution and said the former president “remains a strong supporter and wishes the university a prosperous future.”
Under interim President W. Franklin Evans, the university exceeded its fall enrollment goals for the first time in six years. This after the board voted in June to increase funding available for need-based scholarships by $1 million in order to enroll 550 additional students for the 2015-16 school year. Final enrollment numbers for the fall have not yet been released, but are estimated to be around 2,700 — which exceeds the institutional goal of 2,650 and means a balanced budget for the upcoming year.
“The board is encouraged by the positive developments going on at the university, including our student enrollment numbers for the 2015-2016 school year,” Way continued in the statement. “Resolution of this matter allows the university to continue to focus on our bright future.”