Clemson University President James Barker to undergo emergency heart surgery Friday

CLEMSON — Clemson University President James Barker will undergo emergency triple-bypass surgery Friday at Greenville Memorial Hospital.

Barker announced the surgery in an email to Clemson staff this afternoon. The Post and Courier obtained a copy of the email. Barker said blockages were discovered during a medical exam this week.

“This will require a hospital stay of five to seven days with visitation limited to family, and I anticipate a medical leave for recovery,” Barker wrote. “I have every confidence of a complete recovery for several reasons. First, I am being treated by Clemson doctors and nurses. Second, I am in good health overall. Third, I have full confidence in the administrative team at Clemson to keep projects and priorities moving forward without a hitch.”

Provost Dori Helms will assume Barker’s responsibilities during his absence.

The Clemson Board of Trustees has called an emergency meeting for Friday morning.

Comments { } is pleased to offer readers the enhanced ability to comment on stories. We expect our readers to engage in lively, yet civil discourse. does not edit user submitted statements and we cannot promise that readers will not occasionally find offensive or inaccurate comments posted in the comments area. Responsibility for the statements posted lies with the person submitting the comment, not If you find a comment that is objectionable, please click "report abuse" and we will review it for possible removal. Please be reminded, however, that in accordance with our Terms of Use and federal law, we are under no obligation to remove any third party comments posted on our website. Read our full Terms and Conditions.