In spite of the snow, the SACS-COC reaffirmation committee's visit this week was a great one for UAB. This was an opportunity to showcase our campus, programs and people, and to receive invaluable feedback and thoughtful guidance from the SACS-COC delegation to bolster our efforts for continual improvement.
We have so much of which we should be proud, and the reaccreditation process and the reaffirmation committee's review have been very positive. I am pleased and want to thank the SACS-COC team for their thorough and professional review of third-party comments and our compliance with the Principles of Accreditation, as well as our Quality Enhancement Plan.
While the committee's report is preliminary and will not be final until reviewed and approved by the SACS-COC Board of Trustees, we could not have hoped for a better outcome at this point in the process. In its review of UAB's adherence to the Principles of Accreditation, the committee requires no follow-up, and no formal recommendations were necessary for our Quality Enhancement Plan. The committee also reported finding no compelling evidence of noncompliance regarding the Principles of Accreditation in third-party comments.
I would like to thank everyone at UAB who worked so hard to prepare for this visit, as well as those who rearranged their schedules at the last minute due to weather; it was important that the visiting team was able to meet with people whom they selected.
These preliminary outcomes are a testament to the amazing work being done daily by the UAB community. We should all be very proud of this institution and the hard work that has gone into this important process.
Join the UAB National Alumni Society, alumni, students, and fans as we kick off the Blazers C-USA schedule with a FREE LUNCH!
The Task Force has, to this point, focused on the preparation of a Request for Proposal (the "RFP") to undertake a comprehensive and professional feasibility study of the sustainability of football, rifle, and bowling programs at UAB, including both the operational and capital investments required in order to be consistently competitive for conference championships and post season opportunities (i.e. in the upper half of conference USA over a defined period of time). The Task Force has asked a partnership to be created between a "Big Four" accounting firm (excluding Price Waterhouse Coopers, who serves as auditor for the University of Alabama System) and an athletics consulting firm and/or former intercollegiate athletics executives with extensive experience in intercollegiate athletics financial and operations issues, as well as an understanding of best practices in maintaining a comprehensive NCAA Division I athletics program (this update does not attempt to restate the RFP which has been published in its entirety). The Task Force believes that partnering: (1) a recognizable and trusted accounting firm with a strong public reputation and possessing deep financial accounting analysis capabilities with (2) expert(s) with deep knowledge and understanding of intercollegiate athletics will ultimately allow for the Task Force to submit (3) a professional report, with unquestioned legitimacy, to the University in a transparent manner. Ultimately, the Task Force hopes that this process will provide confidence to the UAB community and the public at large about the results provided to the University by the Task Force.
The Task Force released the RFP on February 5, asking for responses no later than February 16. As of February 15, two of the three recipients of the RFP have declined to be considered for the project. In order to broaden the potential firms and improve the prospects for the best working partnership to be formed to complete the work requested by the Task Force, the Task Force will be modifying their RFP letter on Monday, February 16. The modified RFP will be sent to various firms having athletics consulting practices, inviting them to bid on the RFP as the lead firm and, in doing so, create a partnership with either a "Big Four" accounting firm (excluding PWC) or a large regional accounting firm. The Task Force believes changing the lead firm to an athletics consulting firm, in partnership with, at a minimum, a large regional accounting firm, will broaden the prospects of a successful partnership producing the work requested by the Task Force.
The Task Force will extend the deadline for submissions by one week, to February 23, 2015. The Task Force remains hopeful that the work can be completed in time for it to submit findings and recommendation to the University and the public in early April.
This update is submitted by Wes Smith, Chair of the Task Force, on behalf of all members. Please direct any questions to Wes Smith at email@example.com.
The National Alumni Society wants to thank everyone who took part in our Valentine's Basket fundraiser.
At UAB, we know that knowledge is a powerful thing to create and share. Our university's impact on education, health care, and quality of life cuts across classes, cultures, and continents and reaches from Birmingham out to the far corners of the globe where our alumni teach, lead, and serve. Each day, and with every new graduate, that reach grows.
This year, we are continuing to visit your communities to see firsthand how the knowledge cultivated at UAB is changing your world.
Registration opens at 4:00 p.m. and the race begins at 6:00 p.m. at the UAB National Alumni Society House at 1301 10th Avenue South (next to Snoozy's).