Board of Regents Votes Unanimously to Extend Morgan State University President David K. Wilson’s Contract Through 2030
With New Seven-Year Contract in Place, Wilson to Continue Building Upon More Than a Decade of Success While Becoming the Fourth-Longest-Tenured President in Morgan History
BALTIMORE — During the public session of its May quarterly meeting, Morgan State University’s Board of Regents voted unanimously to award University President David K. Wilson with a new seven-year contract, extending his term until 2030. If served in its entirety, the extension would make Wilson the fourth-longest-tenured president in Morgan’s history, ensuring steadfast University leadership and organizational stability during a period of unprecedented upheaval in higher education administration nationally. This July will mark Wilson’s 13th year as president; the Board last extended his contract in 2018.
“There’s a lot more work to be done. We’re building a research powerhouse here at Morgan, and the pieces we’re putting in place now, along with the work that is being undertaken, will enable the University to continue making a consequential impact on the communities we serve, long after my stewardship has concluded,” said President Wilson. “It is a profound honor to serve as president at one of the nation’s best and fastest-rising universities. I am humbled by and appreciative of the Board of Regents’ continued trust in my capabilities and vision as president. Their support of the direction this University is headed under current leadership is laudable.”
Wilson was appointed as the 10th president of Morgan in July 2010. Under his leadership, Morgan’s Momentum has skyrocketed, as the University has enjoyed an era of unparalleled success and growth. In the time since his arrival at Morgan, the University has progressed and flourished in a variety of key areas, including:
- Increasing enrollment to more than 9,300 students en route to a goal of 10,000, while welcoming consecutive record freshmen classes of 2,288 (2021) and 2,203 (2022) students, and a record graduate enrollment of 1,492 (2022)
- Continuing the success of the University’s “50 by 25” initiative (50% graduation rate by 2025), which has seen Morgan’s graduation rate increase to 46%
- Seeing the University’s second-year retention rate exceed 70% for the 12th consecutive year, an accomplishment for which Morgan was nationally recognized
- Adding more than 40 new academic degree programs since 2010 (18 of which are new interdisciplinary programs), increasing the University’s total offering to more than 140
- Continuing Morgan’s status as the number one HBCU in the production of Fulbright scholars and grantees
- Launching the new College of Interdisciplinary and Continuing Studies, home of the “Morgan Completes You” program and the first new school added since the launch of the School of Global Journalism and Communication in 2013
Campus Growth and Development
- Investing nearly $1 billion in the construction and planned construction of multiple state-of-the-art facilities, including the completed Martin D. Jenkins Hall Behavioral and Social Sciences Center, Morgan Business Center, Calvin and Tina Tyler Hall Student Services Building and Thurgood Marshall Residence and Dining Hall, and the future Health and Human Services Building, North Tower residential hall and new Science Complex
- Acquiring the approximately 59-acre site of the former Lake Clifton High School from the City of Baltimore to expand Morgan’s footprint and future development
- Creating the opportunity for the addition of a new on-campus medical school — the Maryland College of Osteopathic Medicine at Morgan State University — the first such medical school to be launched at an HBCU in nearly 50 years
- Steering Morgan’s financial stewardship and maintaining Morgan’s financial management proficiency, producing consecutive years of solid A1 and A+ bond ratings, as ascribed by Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s and projecting a long-term stable outlook
- Securing the University’s largest individual and alumni donations in Morgan history: $40 million (McKenzie Scott) and $20 million (Calvin and Tina Tyler)
- Completing the University’s historic, $250-million Anniversary Campaign, the largest development effort of its kind for Morgan, and significantly growing the University’s endowment to $98.7 million by the end of FY21, a 554% increase
- Elevating Morgan to an R2 “high research” Carnegie Classification, and placing the University in a position to ascend to the highly coveted upper echelon of premier research institutions by attaining an R1 “very high research” classification in the coming years
- Procuring the University’s largest-ever research contract, a $28.5-million, five-year contract with NASA, and later, in 2021, securing a second award of $28 million from NASA for work with the new Goddard Earth Sciences Technology and Research GESTAR) II Center
- Establishing new research centers at Morgan, many of which are state-funded/supported, including: Center for Research and Education in Microelectronics; National Center for the Elimination of Educational Disparities (NCEED); Cybersecurity Assurance and Policy (CAP) Center; Center for Urban Health Equity (CUHE); Center for Equitable Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Systems (CEAMLS); Center for Data Analytics and Sports Gaming Research; and Center for Urban Violence and Crime Reduction
In 2022, President Wilson launched a new, 10-year strategic plan that culminates with the expiration of his new contract extension. Transformation Morgan 2030: Leading the Future outlines an aggressive blueprint for continued growth and advancement for Maryland’s Preeminent Public Urban Research University and largest HBCU, emphasizing a six-goal focus on student success, faculty and staff development, enhanced research, campus growth and improvements, increased community impact and global initiatives and expansion. Given the University’s current trajectory, it is anticipated that Wilson will be able to achieve many of the ambitious goals that have been set, placing Morgan in an even more successful position.
“I am happy to announce that Dr. David K. Wilson will remain president of Morgan State University for the next seven years,” said Kweisi Mfume, chairman of Morgan’s Board of Regents. “The Board of Regents has given its approval today of a new employment agreement that will keep Dr. Wilson at Morgan through 2030. We, the Board, are quite pleased with the sterling and transformative leadership that he continues to display in the arena of higher education on behalf of our students, staff, and alumni. The agreement reached today underscores our belief in that leadership.
“As Dr. Wilson continues to shape Morgan's ascendency well into the future, we look forward to continuing our work together as a team and we congratulate him on his accomplishments on behalf of the University,” Mfume added.
Under the new agreement approved by the Board of Regents, Dr. Wilson will receive nearly a 5% salary increase (an increase he plans to continue reinvesting back into the University over the next several years). Effective July 12, 2023, his annual salary will be adjusted to $605,000, along with a 457(f) nonqualified deferred compensation retirement plan. In addition, Dr. Wilson will relinquish his faculty tenure at Morgan at the conclusion of his time as president.
“Despite having received attractive offers from other institutions to replicate the success we’ve produced here; I haven’t given any of them serious consideration. Morgan has truly been a calling for me, and this is where I want to be,” added Wilson.
Established under Title 14 of the Education Article, Annotated Code of Maryland, the 15-member Morgan State University Board of Regents governs the actions of the University. The governor of Maryland appoints Board members for six-year terms, except for the student regent, who is appointed for a one-year term. The Board appoints the University president, who serves at the pleasure of the Board. The Board also sets admission standards; reviews and approves University policies and budgets; and establishes the regulatory framework within which the individual units operate. Action items for approval are advanced from the committees managed by the Board. These include the Academic and Student Affairs Committee, Finance and Facilities Committee and the Audit and Institutional Assessment Committee.
Morgan State University, founded in 1867, is a Carnegie-classified high research (R2) institution offering more than 140 academic programs leading to degrees from the baccalaureate to the doctorate. As Maryland’s Preeminent Public Urban Research University, and the only university to have its entire campus designated as a National Treasure by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Morgan serves a multiethnic and multiracial student body and seeks to ensure that the doors of higher education are opened as wide as possible to as many as possible. For more information about Morgan State University, visit www.morgan.edu.
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