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Fairfield University President Announces Departure; Search On For Successor

The Rev. Jeffrey von Arx will be leaving his position as president of Fairfield University.
The Rev. Jeffrey von Arx will be leaving his position as president of Fairfield University. Photo Credit: Fairfield University

FAIRFIELD, Conn. -- The Rev. Jeffrey von Arx, Fairfield University's president, will be departing soon and the search has already begun for his successor, the university announced Wednesday.

Von Arx, a Jesuit priest who has been the university's president since 2004, is looking forward to his next assignment from the Roman Catholic Church.

"Father von Arx is going on to a great new exciting assignment that we cannot share details about at this time. Positions such as Father's are approved by Rome directly, and therefore it won’t be until early-to-mid August that we will be able to publicly share more details,” said Jenn Anderson, the university's vice president, marketing & communications.

He is reportedly "in talks" about his next assignment with the Rev. John Cecero, provincial of the USA Northeast Province of Jesuits, said the Connecticut Post .

The board of trustees of Fairfield University has begun the first phase of searching for a new president, who will be the university's ninth, according to a statement from Fairfield U.

The new president's term would expectedly start by July 2017.

“This is an ideal time to begin our search for a new president,” said Frank Carroll, chairman of the board of trustees at Fairfield University.

“The university has never been in a stronger position, and much of this is due to the leadership of our current president, Rev. Jeffrey P. von Arx, S.J., who has been instrumental in guiding the university into the 21st century and preparing the university community for the exciting period of growth we have entered," he said.

"Speaking on behalf of the entire board of trustees, we could not be more pleased with where the university is today and its future outlook. As we approach our 75th anniversary, this is a wonderful time for Fairfield University.”

Fairfield University recently completed a new strategic plan to guide the institution into the coming years. The largest capital campaign in its history, Fairfield Rising, is approaching its conclusion and is expected to meet its $160 million target, said the release.

The first phase of a new university master plan is well underway and includes new facilities for nursing, health sciences and STEM programs, classroom and technological upgrades, state-of-the-art sports and recreational facilities, a new residence hall and an expanded student center.

Fairfield has seen an increase in applicants in recent years and is anticipating the largest incoming class in school history this fall, the announcement said.

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