History of Diminished Alumni Relations
The St. Andrews Alumni Council is a volunteer group of individuals who are considered alumni of St. Andrews Presbyterian College, Flora Macdonald College, Presbyterian Junior College or St. Andrews University. The Council consisted of 40 members as of May 1, 2021, chosen to act on behalf of all alumni of the schools mentioned. Members are nominated (by others or themselves) and chosen to serve three-year terms. The most recent members comprised the Alumni Council Class of 2024.
The unincorporated organization has been advocating for St. Andrews for decades. Its stated objective is to “promote the interests of St. Andrews University and to establish mutually beneficial relations between the University and the alumni.” Support usually comes in the form of financial contributions to the annual campaign from members. In 2020, 100 percent of Alumni Council membership donated to the Annual Fund.
In addition, the Alumni Council spearheaded an effort to successfully endow a scholarship honoring Past President Paul Baldasare, who retired in 2020 after two decades of service to the school.
Request for Open Transparency
In 2020 and 2021, the St. Andrews Alumni Council passed a series of resolutions
and made several formal requests of the SAU administration.
Board of Trustees
A request allowing St. Andrews representation on the Board of Trustees for Webber International University
A resolution was passed for disclosure and transparency to provide a written plan to restore St. Andrews as an Independent University
A request allowing Alumni Council representation on a Campus Presidential
A request to release the contents of the signed Memorandum of Understanding in 2011 between Webber University and St. Andrews
A resolution was passed to form an Alumni Council committee to review detailed financial information, like 990s
A request to promote the Alumni Council's Paul Baldasare Endowed Scholarship instead of the Administration's Baldasare Legacy Endowment
To date, the only action taken by the Administration has been limited access to 990 Forms (which are a matter of public record) for both Webber International University and St. Andrews University, and the appointment of Fred McCoy to the WIU/SAU Board of Directors. Mr. McCoy is a former Trustee who resides in Chapel Hill with family ties to Laurinburg.
Firing of the 2021 Alumni Council
In June 2021, the President of the officially appointed St. Andrews Alumni Council received a document from the office of the Interim Campus President of St. Andrews University:
“This memorandum terminates the association and support of St. Andrews University (SAU) with the Alumni Council…. SAU will support the new Alumni Council of which you are not a member. Please inform members of the former council wishing to support the new Alumni Council... for instructions on how to apply.”
The undated document was signed by ten members of the St. Andrews University administration and cites no reference to authority granting the University to terminate association and support of the Alumni Council.