ROCK HILL A Winthrop University academic administrator was arrested late Tuesday and charged with driving under the influence and violating the ABC law.
Margaret Williamson, 58, of Rock Hill is Winthrops assistant dean of University College, which offers development services for students and faculty and boasts programs such as the International Center and the McNair Scholars program.
She was arrested by the S.C. Highway Patrol when an officer checked her four-door Infiniti during a public safety checkpoint on Red River Road around 10:45 p.m. Tuesday, said Lance Cpl. Billy Elder.
Williamsons blood alcohol content was between .10 and .16, according to booking records from York Countys Moss Justice Detention Center. The detention centers website states Williamson was booked at 2:10 a.m. Wednesday. She was released on a nearly $1,500 personal recognizance bond.
Williamson has been employed with the university since 1997, when she became the universitys dean of enrollment management, said Rebecca Masters, university spokeswoman. Williamson was made the universitys assistant dean of the Graduate School in 2008 before she was named an assistant dean of University College.
In that role, she became part of a team that works to improve the universitys rate of retention, which measures how many freshmen stay on to continue their education at Winthrop after their first year.
Retention, Masters said, is a special interest of hers.
According to her profile on Winthrops website, Williamson is a Winthrop graduate who worked at Presbyterian College for several years before returning to Winthrop. She earned both her bachelors and masters degrees in education from the university.
Under personnel rules, Winthrop will review any charges pending against an employee in due course, Masters said. Results of that review will remain confidential.
According to the universitys progressive discipline policy for faculty members, oral reprimands, written reprimands, suspension without pay and/or termination are some of the actions that can be taken against an employee who commits an offense. The university chooses which action to take depending on the severity of the infractions, which can range from unauthorized leave to arrests for alleged violations of state criminal laws.
Masters would not comment if Williamson had been placed on any kind of probation, administrative leave or suspension.
It is very premature to even ask about personnel actions in what is a personal legal matter at this point, said Masters, adding that as far as she knows, Williamson had not attended a Winthrop function Tuesday night.
Gloria Jones, dean of University College, declined to comment, citing Williamsons arrest as a personnel and personal matter.
Williamson earns $82,400 a year.
Efforts to reach Williamson were unsuccessful Wednesday.