Now let’s take a minute and think. Who could have wanted all those specific people from the Liberal Arts Department to go? Who was the person who was the most endangered by what they all knew about him/her?
The ex-head of LAD had specific reasons to let these people go. All of them knew how badly she was managing the English language courses. All of them were witnesses of how by her fault there were two courses in English with exactly the same content, exactly the same book, and exactly the same assignments but with a different number of credit hours. All of them were also witnesses of the massive grade curves given to students in these English classes. Some of them even had refused to give those curves! She had an interest in terminating them. They also were involved with the Phoenix show which cost AUM millions because someone from Procurement (probably middle managers along with the Lebanese Chief of Security) was stealing money by having secret agreements with the external providers of services. They all needed someone to blame.
The current head of LAD gave even more massive grade curves. Why is this? Because the students have low English level. Everyone knows that he was the ex-head of EPP and that the program he prepared is his. It is a new program that he created, along with Mohaned who knows nothing about teaching English, and if the students are worse, it follows that either AUM accepts anybody or the program is no longer working. AUM claim that they have strict entry tests and criteria. Then, it is the fault of the preparatory program. How to better cover that than by terminating those who know of this and had proof that something the boss designed is not working? AUM would rather terminate than admit their mistakes.
What about the two coordinators in LAD? Each of them a worse liar than the other. The coordinator of English is reported to have regularly lied about what one of the terminated faculty would say to him. He would report wrongfully to his superiors about that person. AUM News Weekly received a report from someone currently in the Liberal Arts Department who says:
“Both coordinators are scared of their own shadows and will lie about anything to cover up their own mistakes. Dr Xxxxxx made us re-grade over 600 papers and stay over time when he himself went out to have dinner with his family. They never paid us this over time when we were staying the night. We were re-grading the papers of someone who had decided to give all students random grades.” Why was this person not terminated right there and then? Why were all the ethical faculty terminated? Why those who would read pages and pages of essays within those unrealistic 72 hours they get for grading exams? Why not this person who just decided to give any grade that came to mind? Is it maybe because that person is friends with the ex-LAD school headmistress who was only fit for showing people who dared have an opinion the CVs of potential candidates to replace them?
The truth is, after their third or fourth year at AUM, people start knowing too much because they have seen how unethical the place is. These people become uncomfortable for the management and they are terminated one by one if they do not go by themselves. AUM does everything to encourage them to leave by isolating them, stressing them out, pressurizing them and scaring them. Make no mistake in thinking that if there are not enough people at the university, they will keep you because they need you. They will not keep you if they suddenly find out how you believe that what they think they do right is wrong in reality.
Letting people go without reason at AUM means that these people were doing something right. Everyone who remains is either someone who has avoided communicating with anyone or someone who has repeatedly backstabbed everyone else.
I would like you please to send me a formal e-mail notifying me that I do not have to come to work from now on. If you do not send this to me, I will show up at work every day until the 3 months are over.
Also please, send me information about the following information:
1. the exact amount of the money I will get and in details please – please do remember to count my assignment increment in my total salary (xxxx kwd/month total), my indemnity, untaken leave days, untaken sick leave, etc.
2. the time it will take for you to go through formalities
3. send me a copy of the report that you drafted yesterday during our meeting.
I will appreciate it if you did this asap.
Please state clearly if I should come to work. According to my lawyer, I should unless you plainly state that I should not. Please write this down formally in an e-mail or otherwise.
Please answer all of my questions in my e-mail message from yesterday. Please answer clearly and point by point.
On Wed, 5/4/17, Rxxxx Axx <Rxxxx.Axx@aum.edu.kw> wrote:
Subject: RE: today at work
To: xxx xxx <email@example.com>
Date: Wednesday, 5 April, 2017, 5:51
Dear Dr. xxx,
Kindly be informed that the original termination letter has been sent to your address through registered mail.
—– Original Message —–
From: xxx xxx <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Wednesday, April 05, 2017 8:31 AM
To: Rxxxx Axx <Rxxxx.Axx@aum.edu.kw>;
Cxxxx Yxxxxx <Cxxxx.Yxxxxx@aum.edu.kw>
Subject: today at work
Today I have come to work as I stated in my e-mail from yesterday. I am here at Gate C.
I have called you on your mobile phone but you did not pick up. I have also called Mr Suxxxx who cut me off in the middle of our conversation and then no longer picked
I would please like to let you know that I will wait here at Gate C. Please do send me the documents and information I asked you about.
——– Original Message ——–
From: xxx xxx <email@example.com>
Date: 6.04.17 11:51 (GMT+02:00)
Cc: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: my termination and some requests
Despite my polite requests and calls, you still have not replied to my messages. I have requested of you 3 very simple things:
1. please state you do not want me coming to work the next 3 months.
2. please inform me formally what now – money-wise, residency, tickets for home. I need to sort my life out and I need to plan ahead. It is your duty to inform your employee of these things.
3. please send me a copy of the document you signed in my presence on April 3.
I will be sending you another formal letter if this persists. Do keep in mind that your silence also speaks.
On Apr 12, 2017, at 11:18 AM, xxx <email@example.com> wrote:
Any news about the tickets?
——– Original Message ——–
From: xxx xxx <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 13.04.17 16:14 (GMT+02:00)
To: Rxxxx Axx <Rxxxx.Ax@aum.edu.kw>
I do not want to seem pushy, but at this point I would like to have information about the tickets. Are you planning to send me tickets any time soon?
Do I have to start hanging outside AUM gates again for you to actually do something about this? Frankly, I have absolutely no problem with getting a tent and living outside of AUM gates until you and your team decide to send me tickets. I know that I have asked for dates that are later on in May, but still, it will be so much simpler and less expensive for you to just send them to me now. It will probably avoid you some trouble too.
Alternately, I could also start copying people, including the President of the Universe. Do you wish me to do this?
Ignoring my e-mails will sadly not help very much…
Have an amazing week-end!
——– Original Message ——–
From: Rxxxx Axx <Rxxxx.Axx@aum.edu.kw>
Date: 15.04.17 14:13 (GMT+03:00)
To: xxx <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: tickets
Dear dr Xxx,
Will call you tomorrow with regards to the tickets.
——– Original Message ——–
From: xxx <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 16.04.17 г. 16:42 (GMT+02:00)
To: Rxxxx Axx <Rxxxx.Axx@aum.edu.kw>, [Lawyer copied here] <email@example.com>
Cc: Cxxxx Yxxxxx <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Mxxxxxx.Hxxxxxxx@aum.edu.kw
I am writing again to reflect on our conversation today, and to leave a written trace of it, as it is now 4:40 and I am not sure if you will honor your word.
First of all, you have no right to notify me or warn me about anything. Such discussions were not the announced topic of discussion in your e-mail message (see below). You are supposed to do your job and get me my tickets, rather than threaten me.
Please, if you cannot get me tickets to my current home where I am a permanent resident, then reserve the tickets for whichever airport you like (e.g. [Town – Country here] or whatever arranges you) and I can change that later myself. But please stick to your word – you said on the phone this morning that this will be done today.
Secondly, if you need to notify me of something, please do this formally and leave a written trace of it. It seems that you are leaving a written trail of whatever arranges you and in a way that is skewed.
After AUM fired 3 awarded faculty (for excellence) this year, all from the Liberal Arts Department, and 2 more with excellent international qualifications from the same department, we wonder how many it will recruit, from where and with what qualification.
AUM also terminated or received the resignations of nearly 50 people this year. You can refer to ACMAUM Review for details here. The turnover rate is phenomenal! One thing at least in which AUM are leaders – keeping faculty scared, overworking them, disrespecting them and terminating them for no reason, while continuing to overwork the rest.
Above is what teaching quality at AUM will be like for next year and forever and ever until the place becomes a mall. Do yourself a favour, do not even consider accepting a contract at AUM!
Meanwhile, non-fired faculty will be having great fun with fully paid for ready-made projects. They will have to decide whether to pass those students or to fail them and then face the wrath of Student Affairs and their “but we cannot prove it, so give them an A” replies. Take a look:
We would like to introduce you to Fahad Al Othman, signing faculty termination papers. On no, wait! He has an authorized signatory to do the dirty work for him. Someone who liked you and who now has to terminate you with no explanation. Because they were given no explanation why they are terminating you. You did everything right, you think. They have decided the opposite. You were yourself as they told you to be. You thought they liked you. Wrong! AUM does not even respect you. You are worth nothing.
But, dear terminated friends, life starts for you now! You are the lucky ones! Life outside AUM is amazing and you will live it fully and happily! But check out the working time table of the person who just terminated you:
Ramadan work timings: 9 am to 3 pm.
HR deal with resignations and terminations at this time.
Night work timings (during the Ramadan, please): 8 pm to midnight.
HR work on completing the work they have had no time completing during the day. They also work on hiring massively new people from Turkey, Bosnia, Albania, Greece and other economically broke places.
They get no over time. They get no thanks. They are only, like all of you, in danger of getting terminated. And they have no choice! AUM – the proponents of modern slavery and management through fear… Well-done! Who is next?
Someone at the Ministry of Labor, please inspect this! Someone at AUM, please be brave and report your employer!
Dr Burak Papadopoulou is gloomily sitting in his office while our AUM News Weekly reporter is interviewing him. He has been reading the kuwaitbusinessreview.com article about his beloved institution and he is not 100% sure the article covered professors’ workplace satisfaction levels during the past few weeks. In his high-tech office, Dr Papadopoulou has a phone, a computer screen and a computer. “
“I do not like this screen,” Dr Papadopoulou confesses, “Look, my neighbor has a bigger screen. What is this? Does it mean he will be promoted? Or does it mean I will be terminated? Last time, when a friend of mine changed his office, they put him a smaller screen and two weeks later he was out.”
But what about the globally competitive syllabus that you are teaching, Dr Papadopoulou? Does it not satisfy your professors’ needs?
“Not at all. First of all, when I came here, I came for the lakes and the palm trees. I was given a campus tour and they showed me the Starbucks. Back then there was a Starbucks. Now, it is gone. I believe every resort-style campus should have a Starbucks of its own, preferably in the library. Now we all have to go to Al Arabia mall during the breaks. As for the syllabus, they told me I had to make it simple to fit the mini-academic activities and the academic activities days. So now I teach them how to add numbers from Week 1 to Week 4, and then I have some free practice. But I don’t feel fully satisfied… no.”
But, surely, you must do some “applied research and a focus on providing Kuwait with scientific and economically significant value and graduates of the highest caliber”? They say, this is Kuwait’s “oasis of learning”.
Yes, yes. I went to a conference in Dubai but we got sidetracked with the drink in the hotel. I could not go to the conference in Germany because Dr Rma said I have to get a ticket Kuwait – Lebanon – Greece – Lebanon – Sri Lanka – Canada – Kuwait, passing through Istanbul. You know, this Turkish wave I am not sure about, so I thought, let me cancel this conference. He did not approve my article on the significance of the love call of the bushtit bird because it was culturally inappropriate. I told him it’s a real bird but he is in Engineering. Knows nothing about bushtits.
But they say 7000 students are currently enrolled! That must, surely, make you happy?
No. I am a negativist by conviction, although I am hiding it. What I don’t like about the 7000 students is that now they are here, there is no space for us left. It’s student next to student next to student. In my class, they are sitting on top of one another. It’s a problem, you see. I have this class of 100 students. Before the proctoring rules changed I got to proctor them all by myself. I could not even enjoy myself. You know, usually exams time is when you get lots of fun – unfair allocation of hours, coming on Saturdays, overtime with no pay. But now, the colleagues don’t want to discuss this. They got scared about something and nobody hangs out anymore. I think I will get the summer money and maybe go. But I haven’t decided yet.
So if you could talk to a potential employee or student, what would you tell them?
Listen, the place is not 100% resort-like these days. There is too much going on all the time. There needs to be a balance between too much and too little. Look how my neighbor over there got kicked out. Spent here two years; scratched his armpit under the camera the other day. They told him to remove one of the visitors chairs in his office because university policy says you only should have one chair apart from your own in your office. If you get two or more, it means you are promoted. So they told him – “remove extra chair”. He asked “Why?” and HR called him, and he got kicked out. They told me to learn from his mistakes. So I am not saying anything about this screen. Just waiting to get summer salaries, then see if I get into Sharja. We have all applied there. Dr Henrique says they are real nice there. Do you know Dr Henrique? The math guy with the big head? Yea, that one, who got kicked out for…
This is where our reported left Dr Papadopoulou. One of his neighbors says he is still talking to himself. “It must be the stress,” he confided. “The place is not fully resort-like like it used to be.”
A new correspondent we will call Dr Flowers writes:
According to the agreement, Purdue only provides advice when asked. That advice does not have to followed.
The agreement explicitly forbids faculty to claim that their work is in any way affiliated with Purdue.
The agreement makes it clear that there is no benefit to students and that students should not be mislead on this or any other point.
Folks wanting specific answers to such questions can query Purdue directly by writing to Purdue’s Office of Corporate and Global Partnerships. If they do not respond (unlikely), anyone can file a Freedom of Information Act Request regardless of your place of residency or your passport. AUM will, in this case, learn who filed the request, so choose wisely. And they will begin pinging your social media accounts.
Further, to those looking for jobs and commenting on these posts: whilst you may not like the racism, mysogyny, and general anger are expressed on these blogs, you should take into account that these will be your colleagues if you join AUM. If you look up similar uni’s in Kuwait, you will note that this level of rancor does not exist.
Further, AUM fired none of the people who they claim to have fired in at least the last two years. They have ended contracts, which is a whole other thing under Kuwaiti law. Had they been fired, they would have had the ability to sue the university. Many have been told that the university has proof of that they have committed grave crimes, the university does not have ‘proof’ of anything. They mean to scare you. If these things were true, they’d have been obliged to call the police. Where these accusations might be true, AUM would be complicit in allowing them to happen and would be themselves investigated.
I do think you should publish the employee contract as well, including lies and illegal bits.
My best to all of you. I need to go write a final.