ORG Western Carolina University Title Retired Chancellor BIO JOHN W. BARDO served as the Chancellor of Western Carolina University since 1995. During his tenure the University's enrollment increased from 6,500 students to more than 9,400 students. Dr. Bardo established a goal of "raising the bar" by increasing admission standards and improving academic programs; additionally, a cutting-edge, nationally recognized program also was initiated requiring students to bring computers to campus. As a result of Dr. Bardo's vision, Western Carolina University made the top ten list of U.S. News and World Report's list of leading public regional universities in the South. Dr. Bardo pioneered the university's "Quality Enhancement Plan" which emphasizes strong connections between student's academic and extracurricular activities. This model is considered the national model for higher education associations. Equally impressive is the residential Honors College that was created during his tenure and has grown in stature and in numbers to be one of the largest in the country. He has worked to educate local and federal government understand the mission of Western Carolina University and has sought their efforts to help support economic development in Western North Carolina region. The university has built or completed major additions to fourteen buildings, including five new residence halls. Dr. Bardo holds doctorate in sociology from Ohio State University. Following his June 2011 retirement, Dr. Bardo begins a year long leave before joining Western Carolina University as a member of the faculty.