Hamline University president to retire next summer

Hamline University will soon start looking for its next president.

Monday morning, the university’s president, Dr. Fayneese Miller, announced she plans to retire from her role on June 30, 2024.

Miller, the university’s 20th president, has served in the role since 2015.

She’s credited with overseeing the addition of new programs — such as business analytics, computational sciences and contemporary music — growing the number of students applying for and receiving national awards, investing more in some of the university’s signature programs and strengthening the first-year honors program. Miller also oversaw Hamline’s largest first-year enrollment growth, increased the university’s endowment and worked on the Board of Governors for the NCAA, chairing the Division III President’s Council.

However, she also came under fire earlier this year when a former art history instructor at the school filed a religious discrimination lawsuit against the university, which led its Faculty Council to call for Miller’s resignation.

“It has been an honor and privilege to lead Hamline University, an institution that values social justice, equity, inclusion, and civic engagement through its service-learning opportunities for students and curriculum offerings,” Miller said in a statement. “I am proud that Hamline recently received significant federal funding and targeted increased private donations to support paid internships which will afford widespread opportunity for Hamline students for paid real-world employment experiences. It has been a pleasure working together with board members, students, faculty, staff, and the community in enhancing Hamline University’s strong commitment to maintaining high academic standards, creating a sense of belonging for all on campus, and developing students who understand and appreciate their role as members of a civil society.”

“Dr. Miller has been an innovative and transformational leader for Hamline,” Hamline Board of Trustees Chairperson Ellen Watters added. “Through her strategic vision and ability to navigate complex issues, she ably has led the University through a time of growth and change, and she has done so by centering the needs and well-being of Hamline students in her work. Hamline is forever grateful for Dr. Miller’s tireless and dedicated service.”

The university says it will conduct a national search to find Miller’s successor.