Open letter to UB president: How can you expect your contract to be extended?

Open letter to UB president: How can you expect your contract to be extended?
University of The Bahamas (UB) President Dr Rodney D Smith addresses the Class of 2021 during the virtual commencement ceremony on May 27, 2021. (PHOTO: UB)

Dear Dr Smith,

I trust that this letter finds you well. I have decided to pen this as a concerned alumnus. I would be remiss if I didn’t respond to your email dated October 26, 2021.

In your email to faculty, staff and the wider university community, you outlined some of the reasons why you are seeking an extension of your contract as president and CEO of UB (University of The Bahamas).

Let me remind you that under your leadership as president and CEO, the university was given an average of $30 million per year by way of government subvention for the period 2014 to 2020 (a total of over $200 million), however for the same period, under your leadership, the institution has failed to produce audited financial statements.

Under your leadership as president and CEO, enrolment has remained flat year over year for the same period, 2014 to 2020. Similarly, graduation numbers have remained the same year over year, with 2020 showing a decline.

During your presidency, UB has experienced a loss in revenue streams (college prep) but at the same time has seen an increase in hiring and expenses year over year for the aforementioned period. Meanwhile, there has been no significant fundraising, which is critical to the success of the institution. Additionally, there were significant project cost overruns in the millions of dollars specifically related to the Banner software implementation.

UB has not yet achieved SACS accreditation because the institution does not have some of the key requirements to make an application, one of the main requirements being audited financial statements.

Moreover, you were the champion of a board resolution that usurped the collective responsibility and authority of the board to the executive committee during the majority of the COVID-19 crisis, a time when organizations all around the world looked to their boards to guide them through uncharted waters. The crafting of this resolution was diabolical, in my opinion, and goes against the very essence of shared governance, the foundation upon which the UB Act was drafted. The true ramifications of this decision have yet to be revealed.

Having said all that has been said above, how can you have the expectation that your contract should be extended by reasonable deliberations by a prudent jury of your peers concerned solely with national development and transparency? You have failed the institution and by extension, you have failed the people of The Bahamas.

I wish you well in all of your future endeavors and hope that you enjoy your retirement years.

Best regards,

Reno A W Miller,

Concerned alumnus

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When he was appointed, his salary was higher than Mr. Christie’s!
I remember that!
These people don’t have no heart!

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