The American University of Malta has just fired all 13 of its faculty a few weeks before its second semester, Lovin Malta is informed.
The faculty, all of whom were within their six-month probationary period, were informed their jobs had been terminated via email today.
Sources have told this website that the AUM has only maintained four of its staff – the librarian, the registrar, the quality assurance manager and the assistant director of admissions. New faculty are set to be hired to replace the sacked ones, and indeed some were given a tour of the Cospicua campus today.
Contacted by Lovin Malta, AUM Provost John Ryder said he will not answer any questions about personnel action.
“What I can say is that we will enter the new semester in a few weeks’ time with a strong faculty and that students will be well cared for,” he said. “All courses will remain unchanged and no student will have to change his or her course. We have a responsibility to our students.”
Lovin Malta reported late last year that the AUM has been firing several of its staff and faculty members within their six-month probationary period. Two of them – former project manager Eduardo Pagani and former director for admissions Andrea Giummara – have sued AUM owner Sadeen on charges of unfair dismissal.
It has been reported that there are currently fewer than 15 students against the originally projected 330, and that it is now aiming for an intake of 150 students next September.
This latest news comes a few days after the Opposition presented a parliamentary motion calling on the government to retake Żonqor Point – where the second part of the AUM campus is supposed to be sited – from Sadeen in light of the university’s failure to attract students.
Environment minister Jose Herrera has insisted that AUM will only be allowed to use the Żonqor land once capacity at the university’s Cospicua campus is full.