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Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education chancellor Cavanaugh resigns

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Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012, 3:32 p.m.

The chancellor of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education has resigned, effective Feb. 28.

A spokesman for the state system, the umbrella organization that governs the 14 state-owned universities including California, Indiana and Slippery Rock, said John C. Cavanaugh is leaving to head the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area in Washington. He has led the system since July 2008.

The consortium represents 14 Washington-area universities.

Guido M. Pichini, chairman of the board of governors that oversees the state system, said in a statement that he is sorry to see Cavanaugh leave. “He is one of the brightest minds in higher education today. ... All of us in the state system, and most importantly our almost 115,000 students, have benefited from his efforts to bring in new ideas.”

Cavanaugh is paid $327,500 a year as head of the system.

Peter H. Garland, executive vice chancellor of the state system, will become acting chancellor upon Cavanaugh's departure, spokesman Kenn Marshall said.

Debra Erdley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-320-7996 or

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