FSU picks politician as next school president

AP News
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Posted: Sep 23, 2014 5:28 PM

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida State University has chosen state Sen. John Thrasher as its next president despite significant campus opposition.

The FSU board voted 11-2 Tuesday to hire Thrasher over three academics.

Thrasher is an attorney and former state House speaker. He has long-standing ties to the institution and helped FSU gain a medical school.

But his candidacy roiled faculty and some students who questioned how FSU can improve its standing nationally with someone who lacks experience in higher education.

Thrasher's supporters contend his political clout and business connections will help the university get the financial help it needs to grow.

Student protesters began chanting "FSU is not for sale" after the vote.

FSU has been without a president since Eric Barron stepped down to take the top job at Penn State University.