A new year kicked off this month at the University College of the Cayman Islands with Roy Bodden still the president of the institution.

Mr. Bodden said in late 2017 that he planned to step down from his position by the end of this calendar year, and the UCCI Board of Governors stated that it hoped to be looking at final candidates to replace him by the end of February 2018.

But six months after that target date, no new president has been chosen.

“The search for a new President is still ongoing and President Bodden’s contract does not end until Dec. 31 2018. No transition details can be provided until such time as the Board is able to secure an agreement with a new President,” UCCI Board of Governors Secretary Lucille Kong said in an emailed statement to the Cayman Compass.

She added that “the search will continue in 2019 if necessary and the Board has already taken initial steps to ensure that there is no disruption to the leadership of the University if the search has to be extended.”

Three initial candidates visited the campus in April, but two withdrew their applications shortly thereafter. Another candidate visited in May, but the UCCI board made no further announcements after that about the hiring process.

In June, Livingston Smith was appointed to be the college’s first vice president and provost. Board of Governors Chairman Anthony Ritch said at the time that the new position would allow the president to focus beyond the campus boundaries, such as fundraising cooperative programs with other universities, and accreditation. Mr. Ritch also said at the time that he expects the new president to be announced by the beginning of the fall semester.

Mr. Bodden has been head of UCCI for nine years. He took up the post in October 2009.

Board members have lauded the job Mr. Bodden has done, saying that he brought stability to UCCI after former President Hassan Syed misappropriated more than $700,000 for personal use. Mr. Syed, who left UCCI in 2008, was sentenced to eight years in prison in August last year.

“President Bodden stabilized the thing,” UCCI Board of Governors member Tom Simpson said. “The place is now positioned to start fulfilling its purpose.”

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