Sally Mason, retiring, reflects on her time at U. of Iowa - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Sally Mason, retiring, reflects on her time at U. of Iowa

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IOWA CITY (KWWL) -

University of Iowa President Sally Mason is retiring.

She made the announcement Thursday, saying the timing feels right both personally and professionally.

"My husband and I had time to reflect over the holidays, and it did seem like the right time to us," said Mason.

When Sally Mason came to the University of Iowa in 2007, she planned on working on sustainability efforts. But months later, the devastating floods of 2008 hit the campus.

She calls the university's recovery from those floods one of her greatest achievements.

"I learned very quickly just how important the University of Iowa is to this community and to this state, and how extremely, extremely helpful Iowans are," said Mason.

She believes that spirit of teamwork has carried throughout her presidency.

When students banded together and demanded change on campus to prevent sexual assaults, Mason revealed a "Six-Point Plan to Combat Sexual Assault," which she's very proud of.

"Every college campus today is dealing with these exact same issues," said Mason. "We're all looking for the best solutions, we're all looking for the best ways to deal with these issues, and I think some of what we're doing will be viewed as best practices and viewed by other institutions as things to do because they're the right way to go about them."

Mason says it's going to be a busy six-and-a-half months. In that time, she plans to continue her fundraising work.

"The last six months I can do some things for the university on the fundraising side that I think will be quite good," said Mason.

The Board of Regents recently approved cost-cutting measures at the three state universities.

Mason says she hopes the next president will use the savings to invest in the university's academic mission, hiring more faculty and keeping academic programs strong.

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