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University presidents need to be 'administratively' skillful — Wahadneh

By Ana V. Ibáñez Prieto - Feb 21,2018 - Last updated at Feb 21,2018

AMMAN — The development of the higher education sector in Jordan can only be achieved through reform of the administration system at the official universities, Higher Education Ministry Secretary General Ahed Wahadneh said on Monday.

Wahadneh added that “the appointment of university presidents must be based on their administrative experince in addition to their academic success.”

In a phone interview with The Jordan Times on the draft laws of higher education and Jordanian universities, the secretary general announced that “both the universities’ boards of trustees and the Higher Education Council will be reformed after the endorsement of the new laws.” 

The National Campaign for Students’ Rights (Thabahtoona) recently criticised the new regulations noting that “the changes made on the of the universities’ boards of trustees and the Higher Education Council allow the predominance of non-academic members at the expense of academic members”, according to Thabahtoona coordinator Fakher Daas. 

Wahadneh said that the Higher Education Ministry will soon issue a by-law related to the appointment of university presidents and their evaluation, stressing that this is required by the new draft law on higher education. 

Regarding the evaluation of university presidents, the secretary pointed out that the new by-law will come as part of the third strategic objective of the National Plan for Human Resources Development, which requires the Higher Education Council to “set mechanisms for the evaluation of academic leadership". 

Asked about the new evaluation process, Wahadneh explained that “a new system was already introduced last year comprising a total of 14 criteria and over 100 indicators”, adding that “the assessment was made electronically in order to grant all members the freedom of expression needed to express their objective views”. 

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OF COURSE THIS IS THE BASIC AND MINIMUN REQUIREMENT TO BE THE PRESIDENT OF ANY UNIVERSITY. THIS IS AN ADMINISTRATIVE, MANAGEMENT AND PUBLIC/INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS POSITION.

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