Princeton University President Shirley Tilghman to step down

The first woman to serve as president of Princeton University says she’ll leave her post at the end of the academic year.

Shirley Tilghman announced her intentions in an email Saturday to students, faculty, staff and alumni. She had informed university officials a day earlier.

Tilghman, who became the Ivy League school’s 19th president in 2001, will leave office in June. She then plans to take a year’s leave before returning to teaching.

A native of Canada, Tilghman came to Princeton in 1986 as a professor. During her tenure as president, the school greatly increased the number of students on financial aid and more than doubled the average aid they receive.

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A search committee will be appointed to choose her successor.

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