August 1, 2012 ·9 Comments
Dear Chancellor-Elect Dr. Abdi Hussein Gaas,
Congratulations on being elected as the new Chancellor of one of our most important and symbolic institutions, the University of Hargeisa (UoH). Being Chancellor can be a joyful honor that brings great power. But with great power comes great responsibility.
Being graduates of the institution ourselves, we thought we do tell you a little bit about things you should change, adopt, our concerns and experiences. Your selection is both one of the proudest and most exciting chapter for the University after years of crisis at the management.
Whenever we hear good news from our University, there is an excitement, relief, joy, exaltation and happiness in all of us. Equally, any bad news breaks our hearts but we never lose faith in ourselves. This nation and its people have rose from the ashes from time and time again. Today, our people stand behind your leadership and they are clapping and cheering for you. This institution is the future for our people.
If we allow education and such campus to fail, we will see others following the same direction, therefore we must strive to overcome these challenges.
Although you will hear many complaints as the new Chancellor, we are confident that you will lead the University to new heights and restore its credibility. We are fully confident under your wise and competent leadership, your administration will steer clear of any practices by the predecessor and previous administrations.
This has been long coming and the University desperately needed such shake up at the very top. Whenever a solution was put forth to resolve the crisis, which reached its peak in recent years, too often it failed because there was no spirit, pride, motivation or passion to end the disruption. No one was keen on restoring normal operation of the campus for the many students, whom, the University became their second home.
Any committee formed to iron the problems out the prolonged crisis did not attempt to find out where the shoe pinches.
Time and time again, after witnessing the chaos that brought the campus to its knees, we held meetings and discussed at some length possible solutions. Many of these meetings were often heated and lengthy debates but they were fruitful too. Our gatherings continued even after your nomination, Mr. Chancellor-Elect, and we suggest the following recommendations in order to make the University, students and Somaliland succeed.
1. Financial Management System:
The University should set up a complete and effective financial management system including an effective internal control. We strongly suggest an independent audit unit with full mandate to audit physical and financial systems. More importantly, external audit firm should be hired periodically, as to verify the financial system of the university, and that every single dollar is accounted for.
2. Human Resource Department:
HRD should be founded which will fully execute all HR functions. The following units are to be put into operation:
(a) Employment/recruitment unit: As known, the primary function of this unit would be to attract highly qualified candidates to meet the UoH’s staffing needs while providing an equal opportunity for all;
(b) Performance appraisal unit: This unit is to evaluate the performance of every single staff on campus ranging from cleaners to Deans. This unit will also be tasked to reward the staff;
To better the university, every employee should go through a process of performance evaluation, which gives reasonable notice to an academic that they needed to pull up their socks;
(c) Training and Development Unit: This is to train and develop the staff and academia;
(d) Health and Safety Unit: This is to ensure the safety and health of the campus’ diverse staff;
(e) Staff data control Unit: It controls and updates all the data of the staff on campus.
3. Academy Aspect:
(a) All faculty Deans should be evaluated, and eligible Deans should be replaced with appropriate ones;
(b) The university should set up a clear policy towards university lectures;
(c) The curriculum of the university should be reviewed periodically, and often made up to date;
(d) The university must have clear policy relating to scholarships, and the priority should be to the graduates, honour students and the like;
(e) The examination board and the registrar of the university should be transparent and accountable, and also equipped with truth worthy staff.
4. Student affairs:
(a) Student union be re-established through transparent elections. This union will represent the voice students of the student. It should not be regarded as threat;
(b) Student Senate Council should be set up. This council will have consultancy role as well as will represent the students and the university on certain concerns;
(c) The alumni of the university graduates should be restored, and act as a communication means for current and previous students;
(d) The graduates of the university should be empowered to become lecturers at the university or assume position in the University for Motivation Purposes.
There seems an overlapping authorities in the university, which may result in sustained conflict within the university, so:
(a) Chancellor of the University: He should have clear mandate and power;
(b) Deans and other department heads: They should have their own job descriptions and should be accountable for their obligations;
(c) Other staff on campus should have their own job description and titles;
(d) Any vacant position at the university should be advertised and the right person be hired;
(e) The staff should be audited and all unnecessary and over staff be terminated;
(f) The staff should be developed and trained, with the intention of gaining better performance.
6. Public relations:
Public relation staff is to be empowered as well as be mandated to strengthen university external relationship. They should search for scholarships, trainings, internships, fundraising and so on and so forth. Public relations should try to start higher projects, such as Master and PhD.
1. Yousuf Hassan
2. Mawlid Adan
3. Mohamud Abdullahi
4. Hussein Hassan
To read about the election of Dr. Abdi Hussein Gaas (see Somaliland: New Chancellor Takes Charges of Hargeisa University)
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August 1, 2012Follow @somalilandpress