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By Steve Limtiaco

HAGATNA, Guam (Pacific Daily News, June 6) - University of Guam
President Harold Allen released an open letter to the community yesterday,
spelling out his plan to save money at the university while preserving quality
and service to students.

The plan to reduce the number of colleges at the university from
five to three was made public last month, but Allen's letter explains the
philosophy behind the changes.

He said the university must alter the way it operates in order
to grow and to bring in money from other sources. It also needs to step up
fund-raising efforts, he said.

Restructuring the colleges is expected to save the university
about $400,000 a year in administrative salaries.

Three female deans last week filed a grievance with the
university's Board of Regents, saying they were terminated based on gender and

University spokeswoman Cathleen Moore-Linn said the
restructuring will not affect the types of courses offered by the university.

"We will have the same programs, the exact same courses.
Everything remains the same," she said. "The only difference would be
who (faculty) would report to or who they would see to sign documents."

The university needs to do a better job of providing courses to
students outside the university, according to Allen, who said it also needs to
start operating like a university instead of like a government of Guam agency.

"Many of the university's business and personnel practices
are adaptations of practices derived from GovGuam practices," Allen said in
his letter. "The University of Guam must adopt best practices from our
(peer institutions on the U.S. mainland) where there is a 'goodness of fit' and
where it makes sense to do so."

Moore-Linn said university staff will continue to be GovGuam
employees, but the way they do their jobs could be different -- for example,
changing paperwork procedures.

"We're really taking a hard look at the way we do things to
see if we can improve them and make our own system more efficient," she

Allen also has created three new "Centers of
Excellence" at the university to bring more attention to issues important
to the community and to the region.

"The university has focused its collective efforts on
positive change in an environment of scarce resources," Allen said in his

The existing deans were assigned as interim heads of the new
colleges and to other administrative posts, but two declined their assignments
and returned to teaching.

Moore-Linn said the interim positions take effect June 16 and
are expected to last several months.

According to Allen, the university is looking for the strongest
talent and experience, and those serving on an interim basis may apply for
permanent positions.

June 6, 2003

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