The Fairmont State University Board of Governors has approved the annual evaluation of Fairmont State President, Mirta M. Martin, as she begins the second year of her three-year contract, renewed in 2020.
“President Martin’s tenure at the University has proven to be nothing short of impressive, and I look forward to the continued progress under her leadership,” said David Goldberg, Fairmont State University Board of Governors Chair. “On behalf of the entire Board, I am confident that Dr. Martin’s knowledge and expertise in the ever-changing higher education atmosphere will continue to serve the University well.”
Since her appointment to President of Fairmont State University in January 2018, Martin has earned recognition as the 2019 WV News Educator of the Year and was named as one of the 2020 WV Executive Wonder Women, while leading the University to succeed in key areas with the assistance of University faculty and staff.
“We also express our endless gratitude for the contributions of faculty and staff and the efforts put forth to further position the University for success,” Goldberg said.
In 2020 Fairmont State concluded its fiscal year in strong financial standing for the third consecutive year, leading the University to a $12 million turnaround in net positive position since 2018. The financial performance highlights the University’s continued focus on strategic and cost saving/containment initiatives implemented by University Administration since January 2018.
Fairmont State also reported an overall increase in enrollment rates in 2020, despite the global COVID-19 pandemic, and outperformed national higher education trends reported by the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center. According to the data presented to the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, the University saw increases including out-of-state enrollment, first-time freshman enrollment, graduate program enrollment, dual enrollment among area high school students and more.
In addition to growth areas in enrollment and financial standing, the University and faculty received various national accolades. For the first time in recent history, U.S. News & World Report recognized Fairmont State University in its 2021 rankings, including as a Top 100 Performer on Social Mobility and a Top 50 Public School in the Regional University South category.
The Fairmont State Nursing program is well-known for its longstanding reputation of excellence and received national recognition in 2020 from Study.com, ranking No. 48 as one of the best nursing schools in the country. This ranking was determined based upon factors including accessibility, affordability and quality of education.
Additionally, Geoscience faculty member, Dr. Angela McKeen, was named a recipient of the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM). The nominations and awards for the PAESMEM are facilitated by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and the National Science Foundation.
“President Martin has enabled the University to grow, putting the University on the map and earning national recognition in various arenas,” said Rusty Hutson, Fairmont State University Board of Governors Vice Chair. “We are grateful for the outstanding leadership displayed by President Martin and the quality, transformative educational opportunities cultivated for our students during her tenure at the University.”