Showing posts with label Robinson. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Robinson. Show all posts

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

FAMU, FIU, UCF presidents refusing to back down from their enrollment growth plans

The presidents of Florida A&M, Florida International, and the University of Central Florida are pushing forward with their plans for enrollment growth despite harsh questioning on the issue from some members of the Florida Board of Governors (BOG).

UCF and FIU have been called on to defend their big student numbers at BOG meetings ever since they both surpassed the University of Florida in enrollment.

Back in 2009, UCF took UF’s former title as the largest in Florida. 

In Fall 2016, UCF was the still the biggest in the state with 64,318 students and the second largest in the country behind Arizona State University. FIU was the second largest in Florida with 55,112 students. 

Sunday, January 07, 2018

Henry named executive assistant to FAMU president

Longtime FAMU employee Cynthia Henry has been named executive assistant to President Larry Robinson. She assumed the new role following the retirement of former assistant Ora Mukes on December 31, 2017.

Henry has been a part of the FAMU family for more than 30 years.  Her valuable experience includes significant responsibilities in budgeting, grants development and research processes.

“I have previously worked with Cynthia Henry in the FAMU School of the Environment while serving as an administrator, professor and principal investigator. Her attention to detail and superb interpersonal skills will continue to serve the FAMU community well,” said Robinson.

Robinson praised the contributions of Mukes. She came out of retirement to assist him and the Office of the President in September 2016 when he was appointed interim president.

“Mrs. Mukes answered the call and returned to FAMU to help with multiple facets of coordinating activities of the president’s office.  She will be missed,” said Robinson.

Henry’s appointment is effective immediately.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Enrollment growth following Mangum’s exit helps lead to improved Moody’s outlook for FAMU

The enrollment growth that followed the exit of former President Elmira Mangum has helped Florida A&M University gain an improved outlook from Moody’s Investors Service. Moody’s has changed its outlook for FAMU from “negative” under Mangum in 2016 to “stable” as of December 19, 2017.  

“The stable outlook incorporates expectations of stabilizing enrollment, management's commitment to maintaining operating equilibrium and stable to growing state support,” a Moody’s press release stated.”

The press released added that: “The outlook also is also predicated on strong demand for the dormitory system with ongoing debt service coverage above 1.2x.”

Interim President Larry Robinson reversed the five year enrollment decline in Fall 2017. FAMU now has 9,913 students, which is 299 more than last year. The average GPA for the freshman class is 3.39. FAMU freshmen also posted a 1077 average on the SAT, which is above the Florida average and the national average.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

FAMU welcomes U.S. secretary of agriculture

The U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue visited Florida A&M University on Friday, December 8, to hold a roundtable discussion on youth in agriculture. The secretary was greeted by Florida A&M University President Larry Robinson, alumnus and Congressman Al Lawson, and the Dean of the College of Agriculture and Food Sciences Robert Taylor before meeting with Florida agriculture youth leaders from FAMU, 4-H, FFA, MANRRS, and Florida extension staff and University professors.

Discussion topics included how to ensure young people are well-informed about the multiple job opportunities that exist within the agriculture industry, as well as how to dispel myths about what agriculture means to our country.

Monday, December 04, 2017

Faculty leaders applaud Robinson’s efforts to improve work conditions for professors

Back during the presidency of Elmira Mangum, the top elected faculty leaders at Florida A&M University spoke out against the administration’s poor treatment of professors. But today, those same faculty leaders are applauding new President Larry Robinson’s efforts to improve work conditions.

United Faculty of Florida (UFF) at FAMU President Elizabeth Davenport criticized Mangum in 2015 for failing to follow through on her talk about the possibly of reducing course loads, which could give faculty members more time to perform research.

“When President Elmira Mangum was interviewing for her post at FAMU, she agreed that faculty, who teach more than any other faculty in the system, deserved relief in their course load and a decent raise,” Davenport wrote in an op-ed for the Florida Times-Union. “Once she became president, these concerns were replaced with social media promotion on Twitter and Facebook, concerts at Carnegie Hall, trips around the country and world, and filling administrative positions.”

Bettye Grable, who has served as the FAMU faculty senate president since 2014, says that Robinson is now taking the first step toward addressing faculty concerns over how their workloads compare to those of professors at similar universities.  

Friday, December 01, 2017

Larry Robinson named FAMU’s 12th president by Board of Trustees

Yesterday, the Florida A&M University (FAMU) Board of Trustees (BOT) unanimously voted to name Larry Robinson, Ph.D., the 12th university president, subject to confirmation by the Florida Board of Governors.

“I am humbled and overjoyed to have this opportunity to help move this University forward. I understand the awesomeness of this responsibility,” Robinson said, accepting the nomination. “I feel very, very fortunate to be a part of your team. I want to emphasize that our No. 1 priority will be student success – fully understanding that a key element of our student success is the great work of our faculty and staff.”

Board Chair Kelvin Lawson underscored the collective support from the BOT and FAMU community to name Robinson FAMU’s next permanent leader.

“We based our decision on data and followed our process thoroughly,” Lawson said. “We all, collectively, feel good about where we are, and we feel extremely well about our new leader – President Robinson.”

Robinson has served as the University’s interim president since September 2016. He also serves as a distinguished professor and principal investigator in the School of the Environment. He previously served as interim president from July 2012 to April 2014, director of FAMU’s Environmental Sciences Institute from 1997 to 2003, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs from 2003 to 2005, interim president in 2007, and vice president for Research in 2009.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

FAMU BOT committee recommends that Robinson become school’s permanent leader

Yesterday, the Presidential Leadership Committee of the Florida A&M University Board of Trustees (BOT) unanimously voted to recommend the appointment of Larry Robinson as school’s next permanent president.

The members of the committee are Tommy Dortch (chair), Faculty Senate President Bettye Grable, David Lawrence, Student Body President Devin Harrison, and Belvin Perry.

Perry offered the motion, which was seconded by Lawrence.

BOT Chair Kelvin Lawson said the full board will consider the recommendation at its meeting schedule for today.

“We will take it to the full board tomorrow, per the direction of this committee, and we will discuss it further and make a final decision,” Lawson said in a quote published by the News Service of Florida.

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

FAMU BOT’s reappointment of Robinson, request for waiver of presidential search requirement on BOG agenda

Two big items on the presidency of Florida A&M University are on the agenda for the Thursday meeting of the Florida Board of Governors (BOG).

The BOG will vote on whether to confirm the reappointment of Larry Robinson as interim president and also discuss the FAMU Board of Trustees’ request for a waiver of the requirement for a national search.

Robinson began his third stint as FAMU interim president on September 15, 2016. The BOT voted on September 12, 2017 to extend his contract for one year with an expiration date of September 14, 2018.

In a letter to BOG Chair Thomas Kuntz dated September 29, 2017, FAMU BOT Chair Kelvin Lawson wrote that the trustees supported the contract extension because “continuity and stability is necessary during this period of SACS reaccreditation and the presidential search process. Therefore, the FAMU BOT has reaffirmed its confidence in Dr. Robinson’s established leadership and demonstrated commitment to direct its activities during this transition.”

Monday, October 23, 2017

Prairie View A&M, Florida A&M interim presidents increasing enrollment and working to expand on-campus housing

The interim presidents of the land grant historically black universities in Texas and Florida are both increasing enrollment at their schools. They are also working to expand on-campus housing options for students.

An August press release by Prairie View A&M stated that “the university is currently trending 8% ahead of last year’s certified enrollment of 8,762. That surge is driven in large part by a nearly 15.0 percent increase in the number of first-time, full-time freshmen. Additionally, PVAMU has noted a 2-4% increase in retention for continuing students.”

It added that: “Though the university continues to provide residential housing for about 65% of its undergraduate students, including students with families, the unprecedented growth has caused higher demand for on-campus and near-campus housing.”

Interim President Ruth J. Simmons, who served as president of Brown University from 2001 to 2012, said PVAMU is working hard to help the students that it isn’t able to house on-campus.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Student numbers up at FAMU after school lost $19.8M in tuition and fees due to enrollment decline

At the 2017 Florida A&M University Homecoming Convocation, Interim President Larry Robinson announced that the school has reversed its enrollment decline.

FAMU enrolled 9,913 students in Fall 2017. That’s the biggest number of students the school has had since Fall 2015, when there were 9,920 students.

The university had 9,614 students in Fall 2016.

FAMU lost $19.8M in total tuition and fee loses due to the enrollment decline between 2012-2013 and 2015-2016. The Florida auditor general report with the tuition and fee loss numbers from 2016-2017 has not been released yet.

Friday, September 15, 2017

FAMU completes Compliance Certification for SACS reaffirmation

On Wednesday, Florida A&M University Interim President Larry Robinson confirmed that the university had completed the comprehensive compliance audit and Compliance Certification Document required for its reaffirmation with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

“Even as [Hurricane Irma] approached, our Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) team was able to complete and submit our Compliance Certification Document within the deadline,” Robinson said in a public statement.

According to SACSCOC, “the comprehensive compliance audit includes an assessment of all programs and courses offered by the institution on-campus and off-campus, and those offered through distance learning.” Schools must also submit a Compliance Certification Document that “attests to the institution’s honest assessment of compliance with the accreditation requirements of the Commission on Colleges” along with the audit.

FAMU is continuing its reaffirmation of accreditation process with SACSCOC. SACSCOC will make a decision in 2018 on whether to extend FAMU’s accreditation for another ten-year period.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

FAMU trustees unanimously approve one-year contract extension for Robinson

This afternoon, the Florida A&M University Board of Trustees (BOT) unanimously approved a one-year contract extension for Interim President Larry Robinson.

The Special Committee on Presidential Leadership for the BOT voted 5-0 to recommend the contract extension on September 7. At the full meeting of the BOT today, trustees adopted the recommendation with a 12-0 vote.

“I think this sends the right message on stability for our institution. I think it sends the right message on our confidence in our leadership,” said Chair Kelvin Lawson.

Lawson mentioned the importance of having stable administrative leadership as FAMU continues its reaffirmation of accreditation process with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). SACS will make a decision  in 2018 on whether to extend FAMU’s accreditation for another ten-year period.

Friday, September 08, 2017

BOT committee recommends one-year contract extension for Robinson

Yesterday, the Special Committee on Presidential Leadership for the FAMU Board of Trustees (BOT) voted to recommend a one-year contract extension for Interim President Larry Robinson.

“I am humbled by the vote of the committee to allow me to continue my service to this great institution,” Robinson said in a quote published by the Tallahassee Democrat. “I look forward to the full Board of Trustees taking up this issue next week.”

The committee is chaired by Thomas Dortch Jr. Its other members are Student Body President Justin Bruno, Faculty Senate President Bettye Grable, David Lawrence Jr., and Belvin Perry. The committee approved the recommendation with a 5-0 vote.

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

Enrollment growth necessary to repair FAMU’s dorm bond rating and replace Palmetto North

Lots of FAMUans publicly spoke out with their concerns about the slow administrative response to the problems Rattler students found at the Palmetto Street North Apartments on move-in day back on Tuesday, August 24. But some defenders of former President Elmira Mangum used that moment to spread more bogus information similar to what was on the discredited 2016 online petition that demanded a contract extension for her.

One untrue claim that circulated on the unofficial “FAMU Alumni” Facebook group was that Mangum wanted to replace Palmetto North, but Interim President Larry Robinson threw out those plans and just decided to keep that complex on an indefinite basis.

Robinson has said that he wants to tear down and replace Palmetto North. University officials told WJXT-4 in Jacksonville that the interim administration aims “to replace the 45-year-old dorms with new facilities as a long-term solution.”

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Robinson: Getting it right at Palmetto North

By Larry Robinson, Ph.D.
Interim President of Florida A&M University

Since our founding in 1887, FAMU has dedicated itself to fulfilling its motto “Excellence with Caring.” And while our legacy is filled with great achievements and a reputation for a premier student experience, we are a human institution that sometimes has missed the mark. However, even in those moments, we have always found a way to make excellence a priority, and not lose sight of our commitment to caring.

While 2,088 students moved in on time to eight of our other housing facilities without any major issues, we fell short at Palmetto North with delays and outstanding renovations.

Although last week’s unfortunate move-in delay for our new students assigned to Palmetto North was not our best day as a University, we took immediate corrective action and within 72 hours were able to resume normal operations with the help of the entire University community, including alumni and students.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Robinson apologizes to FAMU students, families for Palmetto North problems

Yesterday, Florida A&M University Interim President Larry Robinson made rounds with the major Tallahassee media organizations to apologize for the unacceptable conditions that dozens of students found at the Palmetto Street North Apartments during move-in day on Tuesday.

“The first thing is I apologize to them personally,” Robinson told WCTV-6 when asked what message he wanted to give the students and their families. “Let them know that this wasn’t FAMU’s best day.”

Robinson also spoke with WTXL-27, the Tallahassee Democrat, and WFSU.

According to the Democrat, “students arrived Tuesday to rooms reeking of mold and mildew, safety issues with doors and left behind construction debris.”

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Appropriations bill includes $1M to expand online course offerings at FAMU

(L-R) FAMU VP for Research Timothy Moore, Rep. Ramon Alexander, Interim President Larry Robinson
The new Florida General Appropriations Act (SB 2500) includes $1,000,000 to help Florida A&M University expand its online course offerings.

Interim President Larry Robinson submitted the funding request to state Rep. Ramon Alexander, D-Tallahassee, in January. Alexander then filed a bill to seek the money (HB 2137).

Robinson and Alexander both wanted $5M in nonrecurring dollars for the project. But that amount was reduced to $1M during the budget negotiations.

“The investment will enable FAMU to increase online offerings in areas of strategic emphasis including [science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM)], offer additional high quality undergraduate online degree programs and increase graduation rates,” Robinson wrote in the written request.