CHICAGO (AP) — The president of Loyola University Chicago announced plans Monday to step down at the end of the current academic year.

Jo Ann Rooney sent an email to students, faculty, and staff sharing her plans to retire.



"While this may come as a surprise to some of you, it is the result of deep reflection on my part, some personal issues that warrant more of my attention, and a desire to ensure continuity of leadership once the implementation of our multi-year strategic plan and 8+ year comprehensive fundraising campaign begins," Rooney said.

Rooney is the first female and lay president at Loyola-Chicago.

Her accomplishments include the creation of the multi-year strategic plan, welcoming the most diverse and largest freshmen classes in the university's history this year, diversifying the ranks of the faculty, and growing the university's endowment and strengthening its finances, the university said in a news release.

Rooney may remain in an advisory capacity after the current academic year to ease the transition to the next president, the university said.

Loyola University Chicago is one of the nation's largest Jesuit, Catholic universities, with more than 17,000 students including nearly 11,500 undergraduates.