RIT President David Munson announces plans to step down in 2025

Leader transformed creativity, innovation, academic excellence, performing arts

Carlos Ortiz/RIT

RIT President David Munson stands in the SHED, a multi-use building that opened last fall. Munson proposed the SHED as a place to display student creativity.

RIT President David Munson will retire in 2025 after leading the university for eight years and capping an illustrious 40-plus-year career in higher education. His last day in office will be June 30, 2025.

Munson announced his intentions to retire to the Rochester Institute of Technology community April 23 after informing the Board of Trustees and RIT leadership organizations.

“Over the next year, I intend to remain highly focused on the job at hand. We will have opportunities later to celebrate our collective work in establishing RIT as the premier university in the nation working at the intersection of technology, the arts, and design,” Munson said. “As we have pursued this mission together, I have been blessed with your ideas, passion, hard work, and friendship. I’m also thankful for the support of my wife, Nancy, for taking a leap of faith and assuming an integral role on this journey.”

Munson joined RIT in 2017 after serving as dean of engineering for the University of Michigan for a decade.

RIT Board of Trustees Chairman Jeffrey Harris ’75 praised Munson for propelling RIT into a leading research university with national and international impact and influence.

"Under Dave’s leadership, RIT’s momentum continues to accelerate as the leading university that aligns the power of science, technology, the arts, and design with experiential learning to drive innovation,” said Harris. “We’ve accomplished the goals that we set in our 2025 strategic plan, Greatness through Difference, and Dave has set the table for a seamless transition next year.”

Harris added: “On behalf of the RIT Board of Trustees, I extend our deepest gratitude to President Munson for his leadership and unwavering dedication to our faculty and students.  His strategic vision creates a legacy that will define our university for years to come.”

Under Munson’s leadership, RIT:

  • Reached new heights with enrollment, with the university now serving a record 20,570 students, including growth at international campuses in China, Croatia, Dubai, and Kosovo.
  • Completed a $1 billion-plus blended campaign—“Transforming RIT”—to raise money for scholarships, endowed professors, facilities, and more.
  • Launched a performing arts program that now includes more than 1,800 performing arts scholars.
  • Completed and began major facility projects to enhance the student experience, including:
  • Endured and progressed during a global pandemic, allowing RIT to remain financially stable and continue with its strategic plan.

Harris said the trustees are preparing for a seamless transition and will engage students, faculty, and staff during the search.

Founded in 1829, the university is home to 20,570 students from all 50 states and more than 100 foreign countries. This includes campuses in China, Croatia, Dubai, and Kosovo. More than 148,000 RIT Tiger alumni are shaping and improving the world.

RIT is the third largest producer of undergraduate degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math among all private universities in the U.S. RIT also is home to the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID) and has one of the oldest and largest cooperative education programs in the country. In 2023, sponsored research reached $94 million, while the university’s endowment now stands at more than $1 billion.

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