Haskell Indian Nations University’s Leadership Limbo

The best thing federal officials can do for Haskell Indian Nations University is resolve the school’s lingering leadership question.

Additional federal funds are one way to improve programs at Haskell Indian Nations University, but they don’t address the school’s No. 1 need: a permanent president who can set a strong course for Haskell’s future.

This week, the U.S. Department of Education announced a $1.6 million federal grant to improve academic quality, institutional management and fiscal stability at Haskell. It’s a significant amount of money for the school, whose annual allocation from the federal government is only $14.2 million. According to a representative of the Haskell president’s office, the money will be used to improve advising and student retention services, which is a good goal.

However, despite repeated assurances from the Bureau of Indian Affairs that a decision on the Haskell presidency is forthcoming, the school’s leadership remains in limbo. Linda Warner, who still is the school’s official president, has been fulfilling BIA assignments in other states for more than a year. In the meantime, Haskell has had three acting presidents, but no decision about a permanent president.

The $1.4 million grant is nice, but if federal officials really want to help Haskell, they should quit delaying and return Warner to Lawrence and allow her to oversee and initiate new policies and academic opportunities — or bring in another experienced, courageous, visionary academic leader.

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3 responses to “Haskell Indian Nations University’s Leadership Limbo

  1. Practicality (anonymous) says…

    I am totally flabbergasted that this has taken so long to be rectified. With all the negative information being put out about Haskell. What the heck is so difficult in either bringing Warner back or putting in someone else. I am starting to think that the ineptness of Haskell leadership is just a reflection of the ineptness of the BIA. Seriously, as much negative publicity that has been generated by this, and the the inquiry by Senator Roberts, and the negative comments from students, and the terrible graduation rate, this seems like the easiest decision a government official could make. What will it hurt to put someone else in charge?

  2. sbobandme (anonymous) replies…

    It certainly is a ridiculous situation. There is not a company in the U.S. being run as poorly as Haskell has been run lately. My wife and I as taxpayers would like too know why Dr. Warner is not being bought back? Does the BIA not want Haskell run as a real university should? A nine percent graduation rate, just does not cut it. With this statement we do strongly agree ” The $1.4 million grant is nice, but if federal officials really want to help Haskell, they should quit delaying and return Warner to Lawrence and allow her to oversee and initiate new policies and academic opportunities”. Bring her back.

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