Honor by Association?

A recent article in The Chronicle of Higher Education entitled U. of Wales’s Vetting of Overseas Partners Questioned does not come as a surprise.  The Welsh Education Minister, Leighton Andrews, who initiated the inquiry, was quoted as saying the university must “move quickly” to address the shortcomings.  “The present situation cannot be allowed to continue. The reputation of higher education in Wales as a whole is at stake,” he said.

Half of the 40,000 students studying for University of Wales degrees are enrolled in overseas institutions.  For example, students can study in a United Business Institutes (UBI) program and receive a degree from the U of W.  (UBI is an unaccredited school based in Belgium.)  This is what is known in the business as a back-door approach to earning an accredited degree. 

UBI has international relationships in the following countries:   China, Croatia, Finland, Hong Kong, India, Malaysia, Poland, Serbia, the UK and the US and, you guessed it, Vietnam.  It has relationships with some public and private universities in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC). 

The moral of the story?  Be careful of the company you keep.  Uninformed and unwise choices can come back to haunt you.

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