WORCESTER, Massachusetts — The president of Assumption University has announced that he will retire at the end of the current academic year after 15 years leading the private Catholic school in Worcester.

“For 15 years, Assumption University, its students, faculty, staff, alumni, and benefactors and their success have been a priority for me,” Francesco Cesareo said in a statement this week announcing that he will step down June 30. “The last two years have been particularly demanding, but by leveraging the collective efforts of the university community, we successfully — and safely — led the community through the pandemic.”

Cesareo plans on moving closer to his family in the Philadelphia area and welcoming his first grandchild this summer, trustees Chair Francis Bedard said.

During his tenure, the school founded in 1904 made the transition from college to university; launched new academic programs in cybersecurity, nursing, and other disciplines; strengthened the importance of the Catholic intellectual tradition in the curriculum; and developed cooperation agreements with other universities including Notre Dame, Duke, and Washington University in St. Louis.

The trustees will soon announce an interim leadership plan and start a national search for the next president.