THE NEWLY installed principal of the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona campus, Professor Archibald McDonald, has called for a new approach to funding tertiary education across the region.
Speaking at his induction ceremony on Tuesday, McDonald said the region lacks the necessary funds to continue subsidising tertiary education.
"Although I think governments of the region have a duty to provide some funding to public tertiary educational institutions, the region does not have the resources to fund the quality education that the people deserve," McDonald told the gathering at the function, which was held on the Mona campus.
He said a new funding model, informed by practical experiences, is needed to ensure the institution remains viable and internationally competitive.
diversify revenue sources
"The university must continue to diversify its sources of revenues through new approaches through its core business of teaching and learning, through a more meaningful engagement of our alumni, but also by taking a new approach to research and development," McDonald noted.
Noting that research conducted for academic journals is necessary, he challenged the UWI to now look at practical ways to commercialise its research.
Reiterating his stance that the university should now be looking at conducting research that is in line with the region's development goals, McDonald stressed that this move will be the focal point of his tenure as principal.
"On my watch, the Mona campus will focus on research projects that are aligned to the national and regional development," he said.
The principal added: "These research projects will often be indistinguishable from business projects. To achieve this will require partnerships with public and private entities."
McDonald, a surgeon by profession, succeeds Professor Gordon Shirley as the 13th principal of the UWI Mona campus.
He previously served as the dean of the Faculty of Medical Sciences (2005 to 2012), after which he was named deputy principal.