John Engler resigns as MSU president after comments about Nassar survivors

Wednesday, January 16, 2019 - 3:30pm

John Engler will resign as interim president of Michigan State University after comments about Nassar survivors.

John Engler will resign as interim president of Michigan State University after comments about Nassar survivors. Buy this photo
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This story has been updated with new information from John Engler's resignation letter.

Interim President of Michigan State University John Engler resigned Wednesday night in an 11-page letter to the Board of Trustees just hours after the board set a special meeting for Thursday with the intent to fire him.

In the letter, Engler said it was an honor to serve the University.

"In compliance with your request that I resign & in order to ensure an orderly transition to my interim successor, I hereby resign the office of President of Michigan State University effective 9 am, Wednesday, January 23." The letter read, "It has been an honor to serve my beloved university."

Engler took over for former President Lou Anna Simon on January 30, 2018 in the wake of controversy surrounding Simon's handling of allegations regarding Larry Nassar. Recently, Engler has been under criticism after he made comments to The Detroit News on Friday stating that Nassar victims are enjoying the spotlight.

You’ve got people, they are hanging on and this has been … there are a lot of people who are touched by this, survivors who haven’t been in the spotlight,” Engler said. In some ways they have been able to deal with this better than the ones who’ve been in the spotlight who are still enjoying that moment at times, you know, the awards and recognition. And it’s ending. It’s almost done.”

A tweet from Brian Mosallam, a member of the MSU Board of Trustees, said the resignation of Engler is an end to a “reign of terror."

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Courtesy of Brian Mosallam

Rachel Cunningham contributed to this story.

This is a developing story. Check back at michigandaily.com for more details.