FAIRMONT, W.Va. — The Fairmont State University Board of Governors has agreed to begin negotiations with president Mirta Martin for a new three-year contract.

The board met Monday, which attracted the attention of students as well as community members who want to see Martin remain as president.

“My relationship with her and in our working environment with the university and the things I do every day has been so positive and so good that I just want to continue that and she’s the right person to continue that with,” Fairmont Mayor Brad Merrifield said.

Martin took over the university in 2018. The college was $2.8 million in debt, but now has $1.9 million in reserves.

Enrollment is also increasing for the first time since 2010.

Martin said reaccreditation is her current top priority.

“Accreditation is a priority, that ensures our degree is worthy for our students so that they are able to progress,” she said.

Student body vice president Dillon Bradley said the changes he has seen in his five years has been incredible.

“In that period of time, I can see the changes that have happened and they’ve been drastic changes that had to happen for this institution to stay here,” said Bradley, who is working on his master’s degree.

Martin’s base salary is set at $270,000 with financial incentives for reaching certain goals.

Her current contract goes through Dec. 28.

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