Wilkerson joins ASU as temporary consultant

Published 3:21 pm Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Dr. Tom Wilkerson, the former president at Bainbridge College, is currently serving as a temporary consultant for Albany State University in Albany, Ga.

Wilkerson was called in to help ASU, after an audit by the University System of Georgia concluded that the university had erroneously enrolled 351 students who did not meet minimum applications requirements in 2010.

“I am, at the moment, a consultant to the president of the university,” said the previously-retired Wilkerson, who was the president at BC from 2005 to 2010. “It’s a short-lived thing, no more than six months. I’ll probably be out of here by the end of June.”

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ASU President Dr. Everette Freeman told a recent town hall meeting that the school’s admissions department may have rushed the process, not waiting on test scores to be verified, according to a Friday report on WALB-TV in Albany. The university’s requirements call for students to have a 2.2 grade-point average and make a 400 in math and a 430 in verbal on the SAT, along with a 17 on the ACT.

Students who were already enrolled, despite not meeting the initial requirements, will be allowed to stay.

Wilkerson said he is still trying to get acclimated to the ASU campus and protocol. He said it is too early to gauge any solutions to make sure the problem does not happen again, but believes that the entire university structure will be inspected.

“There have been a number of different directors in the admissions office in the past several years,” he said. “We need to make sure there’s consistency, and that there’s an emphasis on customer service. We’ll need to use the technology that’s available to us through the university system.

“Right now it’s way too early to speculate about any solutions, but I know that eventually we will have some recommendations.”

Wilkerson said he was approached by Freeman several weeks ago about assisting ASU with its problems, and the former college president agreed to help.

“Dr. Freeman is an old and dear friend,” he said. “He needed a little help, and I just couldn’t say ‘no.’ If it had been somewhere else further away, and for a longer amount of time, I would have said, ‘absolutely not.’ But in this business, I think there’s an obligation to help friends when you can.”