In a message to the ETSU community, ETSU President Brian Noland announced Wednesday morning that he has accepted a nomination for consideration as the University of Tennessee at Knoxville’s next chancellor.

“I assure everyone that my focus remains on having an outstanding close to the spring semester, and I look forward to celebrating the accomplishments of our graduates at Commencement,” he said in the message.

Noland is one of four finalists for the chancellor position at UTK, according to the University of Tennessee System News website. Other finalists are Donde Plowman, University of Nebraska’s executive vice chancellor; William Tate, Washington University dean of the graduate school; and Bill Hardgrave, Auburn University’s provost and senior VP for Academic Affairs.

Noland and other candidates will participate in an open forum at UT-Knoxville’s main campus. Noland will present Wednesday, April 17, from 2-3:30 p.m. A video of the forum will be available to the public on the university’s website at the conclusion of the search.

During his tenure at ETSU, Noland has accomplished many things. He has revived the football program, started renovations to the D.P. Culp University Center, purchased the Millennium Center for the university, and over saw the creation of the new arts center to open in 2020.

Noland’s announcement comes after the ETSU Board of Trustees approved a $58,000 pay raise and a new 5-year contract for the president earlier this year.

Noland completed his bachelor’s and master’s at West Virginia University. He then earned his doctorate at UT-Knoxville in political science. He has been at ETSU since January 2012, had previously applied to be president of the University of Tennessee system in 2010.

He later said in a 2016 interview with WJHL about his potential to become chancellor at UT-Knoxville that he had a commitment to ETSU.

“That’s my alma mater,” Noland said to WJHL. “That’s a place that means a great deal to me, but we’ve got a lot of work ahead of us here at ETSU, and I’m focused on the task at hand.”