The University of Shame: But Blame Where It Is Due

 The University of Wales seems to be rumbling from one disaster to another these days. As Ciaran Jenkins continues what now is amounting to a one man war against the institution, he will this evening reveal on BBC Wales’ Week in Week Out, what has largely been revealed through plenty of other mediums, that, in short, the running of the University of Wales is rotten. First we had the bizarre Malaysian fake degree fiasco, then the desperate and repeated attempts to merge with anyone and everyone as the institution prostituted itself to all who would have her (takers were low given the savagely infected state of the product), and now we have the revelation that affiliates of the Institution have been selling off degrees to any old foreign national with a desire for a permit, and the cash to spare – put simply, it is raining shit on the University of Wales.

However, while there will be plenty of hand wringing inside the institution, and no shortage of finger pointing from those outside as the hurried ranks of vice chancellors and pit bull AMs line-up to add their tinder to the bonfire and hoist the broken frame of the syphilitic University onto its funary pyre, it is worth taking a moment to ask where the blame should be placed. In the coming days, as they have done over the past few years, it is the staff, the teaching staff that is, and the students who will bear the brunt of the indignity and shame brought upon the body. Who wants to stand up and say that they work for the University of Wales today? Who wants to wave their degree award from the University of Wales proudly in the air, when across the road a man with grasp of neither the English or Welsh language, pushing a homemade falafel stand down the high street, waves his degree right back at them?

The students are not the perpetrators of this succession of institutional humiliations, the teaching staff, continuing their endeavours to educate in the face of annual cutbacks to staff and research budgets, are not responsible for other affiliates passing on empty degrees to the highest bidder. The finger of blame should dig deep into the heart of the University of Wales, until it jabs at the spleen of those in the tiers of management who have seen this course of action grow and fester and rot at the guts of the establishment, it is those suited individuals who cared about the cream, cut off of the top of the cup of fiscal deviancy, that has transformed what was once, a long time ago, a beacon of educational aspiration in Wales, into an intestinally crippled, diarrhoea ridden goblin, lurking under a bridge and clawing at the coat tales of any institution not yet stained by its rot.

Find who is responsible – punish them, cleanse with fire if need be those who have torn down the foundations of this institution, and build it a new from inside out, but see that the blame is placed where it is deserved. Many good honest hard working staff and students will be punished because of this, and the blame is not theirs to carry.

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  1. Not quite a one man war

    The concerns about the University of Wales were actually pointed out by me in October 2008 and by the BBC in the next month.
    http://www.dcscience.net/?p=259
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/7740904.stm

    Since then there was a lot more publicity a year ago, which again exposed the incompetence of their validation procedure, and the failure of the QAA to notice it
    http://www.dcscience.net/?p=3675

    There was plenty of warning about the recent crisis, and it took far too long to act on the warnings. The vice chancellor who presided over the validation fiasco (who was made aware of the problems in 2008) has, I notice, been promoted.
    http://www.dcscience.net/?p=4766.

    As one says so often, you couldn’t make it up.

    • Yes, sorry, that wasnt meant to imply that Jenkins is the only one working on this subject, just to say that he is probably the most visible journalist coverage the topic.

      But indeed, the warnings had been there, which I suppose was the whole point of this rant, that it was there to be found/seen and just left to rumble by either ignorant or unscrupulous individuals, who should be named, shamed and fired, while allowing those many individuals unrelated to the shambolic development, to try and move on with their careers, as untarnished by all of this as possible.

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