Sun | Jan 21, 2018

Hope for UTech - Former education ministers say Vasciannie right man for job

Published:Tuesday | December 20, 2016 | 12:00 AMRomario Scott
Maxine Henry-Wilson

Two former education ministers have welcomed with open arms, the appointment of Professor Stephen Vasciannie as president of the University of Technology (UTech), Jamaica.

Vasciannie, a former principal of the Norman Manley Law School, will take up duties on January 2, 2017, filling the position that has been vacant for almost four years.

Speaking with The Gleaner yesterday, Maxine Henry-Wilson, a former education minister, said Vasciannie's appointment comes at a time when the university needs to settle down.

She pointed out that with the institution grappling with several issues, including staff morale and resource constraints, Vasciannie's appointment is timely.

"There are issues relating to financing and issues relating to positioning of the institution. I anticipate and I trust that the institution will benefit from Professor Vasciannie's years of experience," Henry-Wilson said while expressing her belief that the institution has not tanked and could rebound with good leadership.


Good for the university


Also weighing in on Vasciannie's appointment was Burchell Whiteman, another former education minister who served as acting president of the UTech from 2014 until 2015.

"I welcome the appointment. I think it is good for the university and I think he will do a very good job," Whiteman said.

Continued the former education minister: "I am very positive about the development, and at the same time, I would express my appreciation to professor [Collin] Gyles who held the university together while a new president was being sought."

UTech was left without a president after Professor Errol Morrison left the position following a government report alleging poor management of the institution under his leadership.