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UVI Board Approves the University’s First Ph.D. Program; New Tuition Overload Policy and FY 2015-16 Operating Budget

UVI President David Hall presents the President's Appreciation Award to Provost Camille McKayle, Dr. James Maddirala, Henville Pole, Stuart Ketcham and Dr. Frank Mills.

In the regular session of its quarterly meeting on Oct. 24, on the Albert A. Sheen Campus, the University of the Virgin Islands Board of Trustees approved the University’s first Ph.D. program. Starting in Fall 2016, UVI will offer a three-year advanced level degree in Creative Leadership for Innovation and Change. Business, education, public administration and health care are just a few of the areas of study that this trans-disciplinary Ph.D. program will encompass.

Doctoral students will have the option to take traditional face-to-face classes, online classes or a combination to the two. The program is designed to be a three-year, nine-semester program that will utilize Fall, Spring and Summer as full semesters.

UVI has entered into a memorandum of understanding with Buffalo State University, which has a master’s in creative leadership program and master’s certificate. Students will be able to simultaneous get a master’s degree in creative leadership from Buffalo State University as they work on their Ph.D. at UVI.

“This is a great milestone,” said Attorney Henry Smock, UVI Board chair.

For her leadership in shepherding the creation of UVI’s first Ph.D. program, UVI President David Hall presented the annual President’s Appreciation Award to Provost Camille McKayle, members of her staff and UVI’s faculty. This is an important and historic academic initiative, said President Hall.

 “Our faculty played a critical role in making this come about,” he said. “They were the academic guardians to make sure that this program met the right standards.” 

“UVI’s first Ph.D. really does symbolize that as a University we have matured,” President Hall said. “To have a Ph.D. program and to be able to allow Virgin Islanders and any one in the world to receive the highest degree possible in creative leadership at the University of the Virgin Islands is very significant and clearly worthy of the President’s Appreciation Award.”

Dr. Hall customarily recognizes UVI employees or units that have performed exceptionally with the President’s Appreciation Award. Creating this one of the objectives of the University’s Strategic Plan 2017.

The Board also voted to implement a new Tuition Overload Policy. Students that take more than 17 credits per semester, which is considered an overload, will be assessed an overload charge

The policy will assess an overload charge for all undergraduate students, resident and non-resident, as follows: 

  • Undergraduate resident students will pay $147 per credit hour rate for each credit hour enrolled of seventeen or more per semester.
  • Undergraduate non-resident students pay $ 221 per credit hour rate for each credit hour enrolled of seventeen or more per semester. 

The new policy goes into effect in Fall 2016.

The Board voted to approve the FY 2015-2016 total projected operating revenues and expenditures budget of $46.2 million.

The Board also set the alumni giving goal for fiscal year 2015-2016 to 50 percent. The Board voted to set the fiscal year 2015-2016 annual fund goal at $2.56 million.

In his report to the Board, President Hall said that the institution had an overall two percent increase in freshman enrollment for the fall 2015 semester.

In his report President Hall also said that UVI successfully launched an extension campus at the University of St. Martin this fall. The University enrolled 15 master’s in education graduate students concentrating in either counseling or curriculum, and 10 bachelor’s of arts business majors with concentrations in accounting or management.

The Board received an update from Dr. Gilliam Marcelle, executive director of the Research and Technology Park (RT Park).

Dr. Marcelle said the RT Park has made progress on unfolding the new vision and strategy, which is centered on its role as a specialist in economic development agency in the territory. The number of active tenants in the RTPark program remains at 30 with the expectation that by the end of the calendar year, the number will increase to 35.

Two new Board of Trustees members were welcomed by the Board at Saturday’s meeting – Trustee Devon Williams, student representative and Trustee Dr. Richard Hall, faculty representative.  Board Chair Trustee Smock presented outgoing Trustees Edward Thomas and Patricia Steele with plaques of appreciation for their service.

            Actions taken by the Board in executive session include:

  • Approval of minutes from Feb. 13, Board of Trustees meeting
  • Approval of the list of nominees for honorary doctorate degrees
  • Approval of a list of possible commencement speakers
  • Approval of presidential goals for 2016
  • Accepted the self-appraisal on President Hall’s performance for 2014-2015

In executive session the Board also discussed personnel and legal matters, received updates on the School of Medicine, and authorized the administration to pursue certain options moving forward.