ROMAN HOLIDAY: UA President Donald Bobbitt, five members of the UA Board of Trustees and some spouses are off to Rome this week to check out the UA center in Rome.
University of Arkansas President Donald Bobbitt
and five members of the University of Arkansas Board of Trustees
took off for Rome Sunday for a five-day trip for what a press announcement said was "informational purposes... to learn more about the operations of the University of Arkansas Rome Center. "
The center was established in 1989
to provide opportunities for study abroad.
Fall's a nice time to visit Rome. Fayetteville is nice in the fall, too. Today, an open forum is scheduled there for one of the three finalists for chancellor
of the Fayetteville campus. Joseph E. Steinmetz
, provost at Ohio State, will make a presentation and take questions. It's the second of three open forums.
A faculty member writes to object to the Rome trip, when the trustees — rather than flying to campuses to meet chancellor candidates — could see them in Fayetteville. "No wonder Bobbitt got a 20 percent raise and we faculty got near zero," the correspondent comments.
I've asked for info on the cost of the trip and who's attending, including spouses. I was told already that Trustee John Goodson
and Associate Supreme Court Justice Courtney Goodson
(whose infamous Italian yacht vacation
presents a small complication in her race for chief justice) is not part of the president's entourage.
I wonder how many trustees have taken four-day visits, with spouses, to Monticello or Pine Bluff or Morrilton.
Notice of the trip was reportedly sent to press Friday, which satisfied notice under the state Freedom of Information Act. A two-day warning wouldn't be advantageous to obtaining a low-priced ticket to accompany the majority of a public board on its junket should someone desire. Maybe they won't discuss business during the jaunt.