Bye Bye "Billy Bull" ...

Some in this world are blessed with an over abundance of bullshit, when it came to a higher deity handing out the talents. Now, those who know me know that I can present a good yarn when the mood comes upon me and to be entirely impartial, I do admire a well crafted bit of the old "Bull" when presented by an experienced artisan.

On hearing of the exit of one protagonist; my mind reeled back to a meeting some three years ago in my office. At that time a colleague and I were to meet for the first time a new sector expert, appointed to help raise the industrial profile of some programmes within the university.

Open minded and willing, it was relayed to us pre-meeting that they claimed to be able to solve our 'deficit' of vendor accredited associated lecturers. Unlike many disciplines, to deliver on one particular vendor based programme, it was an unavoidable requirement that anyone we expose to our students must have passed some teaching and certification goals set by this vendor.

Basically they had a profile on a system, if they were not part of this system, they could be used by us, as we needed this system to deliver the specialist content to our students. We had done some considerable work in the past to tap into this community and our profile was already well known. Our real problem was in this community, not every prospective associate lecturer was up to our standards let alone those of the vendor.

As you may guess, knowing what we do, we wanted to hear the sagely advice from this soul. They had made considerable headway in sharing with all (and sundry) their contacts and ability to be the great hope we were apparently looking for.

The conversation was convivial, we discussed many sector matters, all having a considerable collective experience. When it came to the specific vendor and the opportunity of recruiting more associate lecurers, the advice was somewhat paltry.

"You can use trainers from industry"

... "um, no we can't"

"There is nothing stopping you"

... "eh, yes there is"

"what?"

... "the vendor, they ...", whereupon we had to explain to a class A numpty how their education programme actually works.

Did you say that you are an expert in this area, we actually didn't think much at the time and proven experience over the last three years has shown an excellent track record of over promising, taking undue credit and under delivering.

Now all we wonder is ... pushed or jumped?

What a shame (it is not).


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