TOMPKINS COUNTY, N.Y.—Tompkins Cortland Community College President Dr. Orinthia Montague will be departing the school, according to an email she sent around to the campus community Wednesday.

Montague, who arrived on campus as president in 2017, said her last day with TC3 will be August 23 in the email. She is leaving to become the president of Volunteer State Community College in Tennessee, assuming the state’s Board of Regents approves her appointment.

The story was first reported by 14850.com. Volunteer State Community College, near Nashville, is about four times larger than TC3 in terms of student population. The news comes on the heels of Ithaca College President Shirley Collado’s decision to leave IC for College Track.

“Leaving is not an easy decision,” Montague wrote. “I came to TC3 in 2017 as a new president and have grown both personally and professionally during my time at the college. TC3 is an exceptional institution with tremendous faculty, staff, and students and [a] gem within the SUNY system.”

TC3 is still in the midst of a financially dicey situation, which has been the case for several years. As referenced in the email, Montague had sent a previous message to the community informing them that she was a finalist for a presidential opportunity, though she did not name the other school at the time. TC3 spokesperson Pete Voorhees said there was no further comment currently.

“I explored the possibilities and it became clear that this was an opportunity I could not pass up,” Montague said. “I will go to Volunteer State Community College as a better version of myself, thanks in large part to my time within the TC3 community.”

Montague said that the school’s Board of Trustees will hold a meeting on July 12 to discuss “a plan to continue the forward momentum of the college” while she transitions out of her role.

Matt Butler

Matt Butler is the Education & Public Health Reporter at the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached by email at mbutler@ithacavoice.com