This paper is receiving reports that living conditions for lecturers and students at the main campus of the Cuttington University in Suakoko District, Bong County, are very deplorable characterized by salary delay, power outages and reduction in food ration, among others, but the President of Cuttington Dr. Herman Browne dismisses these reports as sweeping statement and cartoon of fallacy.
He declines to speak on tape, but promises to provide more clarity on these concerns subsequently. The New Dawn gathers that since the ascendency of Dr. Browne as president, Cuttington University has lost prestige as the best university in Liberia.
Prior to his ascendency, enrollment at the institution was high and dormitory students enjoyed 24 hours current besides three square meals daily at the cafeteria, and instructors worked in harmony and enjoyed their little benefits, while entrance fees, tuition and non-tuition fees were affordable.
Since the coming of Dr. Browne in 2016, “things have fallen apart” and dissatisfaction seems to be order of the day among both faculty and students.
Entrance fees has increased from US$20 to US$35, while credit hours is reportedly up to US$50 and registration fees now stand at US$ 200.
Electricity on campus has been rationed from 24 hours service to eight and four hours, respectively per day.
Sources inform this paper that dormitory students are being restricted to two meals daily with alleged nepotism creeping in the administration.
Speaking to The New Dawn, some of the students on campus expressed dissatisfaction over the current treatment at the University, which they term as totally unacceptable.
They confirmed reduction in their feedings as dormitory students, constant increment of fees and cut in power from 24 to eight hours as total nightmare to their successes at the University.
“This is our first time since we started attending this University to see ourselves sleeping in darkness and even providing our own food when we have been demanded to pay these fees. Some of us are finding it difficult to even make a pass because as soon as current comes, it can’t even allow us do our assignments before we say study. Many of us will be forced to take transfer because this situation is really getting unbearable”, some of the aggrieved students lament.
According to them, they see no justifiable reason why Dr. Browne is turning the institution to hell when the University cannot boost of improvement under his regime.
“We see no reason for these mandates, because nothing has changed; we still face the problem of low equipment at our laboratories, roads are still dusty, and no updated books we can boost off; but yet, we pay for them.”
They described the current posture of CU President as counterproductive to the improvement of the institution.Investigation conducted by this writer indicates Dr. Browne’s leadership is the first administration under which faculty stage go-slow against salary delay.
Cuttington University was established in 1889 by the Episcopal Church of the United States after Liberia declared her Independence in 1847.
Cuttington was founded by Samuel Ferguson, the first black bishop of the Episcopal Church of the United States. Born to a slave mother in Charleston, South Carolina, Ferguson immigrated to Liberia at a young age. His initiative to bring tertiary education to the young country was supported by Robert Cutting, a New York philanthropist and Episcopal layman whose $5,000 bequest got the school named in his honor.
The present-day campus of Cuttington University opened in 1949 across the country from its original site at Cape Palmas, near the border with the Ivory Coast. After two decades of suspended operations, the government of former President William V.S.Tubman donated 1,500 acres to the Episcopal Church to spur its renaissance.
Contrary to popular belief, operations weren’t suspended because of the depression or the Second World War. According to Elwood Dunn, a graduate of the university and one of Liberia’s most renowned intellectuals, students walked out en masse because a white administrator made the students conduct endless military drills and refused to hold classes.
By Joseph Titus Yekeryan in Gbarnga-Editing Jonathan Browne