WORCESTER (CBS) –Father Michael McFarland announced Thursday he is stepping down as president of the College of the Holy Cross after leading the college for 11 years.

McFarland made the announcement at a campus-wide meeting, and then in a subsequent e-mail to students, faculty, staff, alumni and parents of students. He is the 31st president of the undergraduate Jesuit college.

The resignation comes nearly three months after the Worcester City Council demanded that Father McFarland reign in his student body and take a stronger stand against off-campus partying. City residents claimed the Holy Cross students had overrun the neighborhoods surrounding the college with noise and garbage.

At the time, the college expressed surprise and disappointment with the comments made by some of the City officials, and stated that Holy Cross was committed to good relations between the college and their neighbors on College Hill.

Fr. McFarland will stay on as president until a successor is in place. The college says a nationwide search for the 32nd president has already begun.


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