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Former interim University President Claire Fagin will retire at the end of the current academic year, following a sabbatical during the 1996 spring semester. And former interim Provost Marvin Lazerson confirmed reports of Fagin's retirement on Monday. Fagin and Lazerson presided over the University in 1993-94 after former University President Sheldon Hackney and Provost Michael Aiken resigned. Fagin served as dean of the School of Nursing from 1977 to 1991. She currently holds the title of Leadership Professor of Nursing. News of Fagin's decision took many administrators by surprise. On Tuesday, University President Judith Rodin had not yet heard that Fagin would be retiring. "Claire is a remarkable educator and a first-class investigator," Rodin said. "If she is planning to retire, it will be a great loss to the Nursing School and to Penn. She is in herself an institution and will be very difficult to replace." And Nursing School spokesperson Susan Greenbaum said she knew only that Fagin would take a sabbatical next semester. "All anyone in the Nursing School knows is that she's going away next spring," Greenbaum said last week. "I don't know what her plans are after that." But Lazerson and another administration officials confirmed that Fagin had indeed made the decision to retire. Fagin's long career at the University earned her the respect of many of her colleagues. During her tenure as dean of the Nursing School, she was known as "the University's dean of deans." Lazerson praised Fagin this week, in light of her pending retirement. "Claire Fagin is one of the true greats in the annals of the University of Pennsylvania," he said. "I cannot think of anyone who has given more, so successfully." Fagin could not be reached for comment.

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