The head of Oral Roberts University stepped down Friday amid accusations of misconduct. The resignation is effective immediately. Now, the university will begin searching for a new president. The News On 6's Chris Wright reports that the students who have remained on campus for the holiday weekend say ORU will weather this storm.
In a letter to the Board of Regents, Roberts simply said, "I love ORU with all my heart. I love the students, faculty, staff and administration and I want to see God's best for all of them." Friday's announcement was the culmination of nearly two months of controversy for Roberts and his family. In October, three former professors sued the school. They say they were fired after reporting ORU's alleged involvement in Tulsa's mayoral race. The lawsuit also claims that the Roberts misused university funds to, among other things, remodel their home and pay for a Caribbean trip for their daughter. The former president has denied the allegations.
"What do you make of it?" asked Larry King during a television interview on "Larry King Live."
"Larry I'm not sure exactly what to make of it," Richard Roberts responded. "It's the most unusual thing I've ever witnessed in my life." "This is a shot out of the blue?" asked King.
"It's a shot out of the blue and I'm very concerned over it," Roberts said.
Some of the students who remained on campus for the holiday weekend say they were surprised by the resignation.
"I think he's wonderful, and I don't think he needs to do that. I don't want to see him leave as president," said ORU freshman Courtney Muelle.
Still, those who spoke to us say they are disappointed, but stand by the Roberts, and are not concerned about the future of ORU.
"I think God will put the right person in the right place. I'm not worried about it," said Tamara Loken, an ORU freshman.
"This is God's University," said junior Keith Wigner. "He's not bound by anything that happens here on earth. No I'm not worried."
Last month, Roberts temporarily stepped aside as ORU's president. Roberts also received a vote of no confidence earlier this month from tenured faculty at the university.
The school's Board of Regents will meet on Monday and Tuesday to begin discussing the search for a new president.
Originally aired 11/24/2007 5:52 PM - Updated 11/24/2007 10:03 PM
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