The Minister of Education, Science, and Technology in the Bahamas has announced that Rodney D. Smith will be the next president of the College of the Bahamas. Dr. Smith has been serving as vice president for administrative services at Hampton University in Virginia.
Dr. Smith had previously served as president of the College of the Bahamas but resigned in 2005 when he was accused of plagiarism. Smith admitted that he has made a mistake in giving a speech by using remarks originally uttered by John Sexton, president of New York University, without proper attribution.
In announcing that Dr. Smith would be the next president of the College of the Bahamas, the College Council issued a statement which read in part: “Advisory Search Committee (ASC) members and Council members were of the view that Dr. Smith was, undoubtedly, the best candidate for the position of president of the College of the Bahamas. In reaching this position, the ASC and Council considered that Dr. Smith deserved a second chance because he had assumed responsibility for his actions that led to his resignation, had voluntarily resigned because of the act of plagiarism attributed to him, had suffered public humiliation, and had – in his various interview encounters with ASC and Council members – shown sufficient contrition over the circumstances that led to his resignation from the college in 2005. Moreover, as part of the formulation of its position regarding Dr. Smith’s candidacy, Council members considered it a highly relevant factor that, notwithstanding the price and public humiliation experienced by Dr. Smith over the affair, Dr. Smith had been able to weather the storm and excel within the academic arena in the United States.”
Dr. Smith is a graduate of St. John’s University in Collegeville, Minnesota. He holds a master’s degree from Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee, and a second master’s degree and an educational doctorate from Harvard University.