Some of us in Silver City may have noticed all the "improvements" going on at Western New Mexico University. 

At least some of it, the better lighting and the planting of trees, as well as the use of solar panels for energy use, likely benefit the community and the university.

But it also seems that many of the expenditures, some lavish, are unseen. However, a recent article in Searchlight New Mexico have brought those expenditures to the light of day. 

Where, I ask, do the members of the WNMU Board of Regents stand on this outrageous spending? Have they been too charmed by his convincing words?

When Joseph Shepard came to interview at WNMU for the position of president, he seemed the most logical choice because of his background and his fundraising skills. He charmed many of the interviewers as well as the public, with his sunny disposition and seemingly conservative views at the time.

What changed? Or did he change? Did he start out slowly so as not to spook anyone?

But you may have noticed that he goes through vice presidents of financial affairs  in a rapid fashion. Since he's been in the position for 12 years, at least four have come and gone. Why did they leave? Did he fire them for questioning his policies and demands? Did they resign because they realized the shenanigans that he used?

According to the article, at least one sued and received a payout in settlement. That was certainly kept quiet, wasn't it? Where did that money come from? The university students' tuition or the state funding for the university that should go to provide student learning?

At least one of his degrees is in mathematics, and at one time, and, maybe still, he taught remedial math to students coming into the university. But seemingly he can't add and subtract. Either that or he does it too well so as to cover up overspending?

Shepard still had good ideas, one being his support of a vocational tech school to provide trades skills to those who do not wish to attend university. 

The university offers trades, such as welding courses, for certification, so he hasn't been all bad.

But available money seems to have gone to his and his second wife's heads.

As the Bible says:

Timothy 6:10 King James Version: "For the love of money is the root of all evil..."

Perhaps instead of seeking justice for a man who seems to have gone astray, we should pray that he repents from his overspending ways and seeks help for his waywardness. 

And perhaps most importantly, he should remember that he was hired to run a university that exists to teach students skills and knowledge that they need for a successful life, not to have fun on their money.

Links to two articles: 


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