Smith should address lingering questions

President McCarthy was not someone I interacted with very much. I would see him in passing, always wearing a smile, and he seemed to be a warm person. Under his presidency, I became aware of many changes:  Fenton being sold, Somerset being built, a new marketing campaign done by advertising agency DeVito/Verdi, and small increases in tuition. It was clear that Suffolk was heading in a new direction. Even so, President McCarthy’s departure seemed sudden because of its timing. Thinking back to this summer, when advertisements were rolled out and Suffolk Law School underwent administrative changes because of an alleged decline in student enrollment, I don’t think I saw the change coming. I thought McCarthy would have a hand in the future of Suffolk since he made so many changes in his two years of presidency. But, now that it has happened, I think that all signs pointed to “yes.”

President Norman Smith is part of a “New Suffolk.”

As a senior who transferred to Suffolk in fall 2012, the year McCarthy replaced Interim President Barry Brown, I have been at Suffolk during a period of reshaping and revamping. I am not worried about how this change affects me anymore, although I remember being disgruntled at the changes in tuition in the past two years. I’m mostly worried for staff and faculty at Suffolk who will be affected. With this shift in leadership, I imagine that some staff will be wondering if they will be suddenly taken out of their positions for the “New Suffolk” too.

Should faculty still feel secure in their jobs, when Suffolk seems to be in a  constant state of change?  What will be  adjusted in the next year or so? Will we be downsizing? Will faculty be getting a raise, or is their pay going to be frozen during this transitional period?

I feel that there should be more transparency at Suffolk. College is expensive. Going to a private university is even more expensive. I understand enrollment numbers going down, and the university is adapting to those numbers, but I hope that staff and faculty can still feel secure in their jobs and are not affected negatively by the change. I think that we should all know why Suffolk keeps changing. What sort of state are we in? Maybe that would ease any worries about organizational adjustments that Suffolk might have.

I personally don’t need to know why McCarthy left. I don’t care about whether or not a member of the board did not like him or his ideas, or if the apparent suddenness of the change meant that he was ousted.  I just think that Suffolk’s audience should know what direction the university is heading in the future.

I would really like President Smith to address any prospective developments at Suffolk, and talk about what our game plan is for the future. That way, faculty, staff and maybe even students who will be here, say, for the next two to four years, can also feel and be a part of that vision.