Expert says changes to university governance take years

A higher education expert told lawmakers big changes like those Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is proposing for six state universities take years to implement effectively.
    
Haslam last week said he will introduce legislation to create local boards for Austin Peay in Clarksville; East Tennessee in Johnson City; Middle Tennessee in Murfreesboro; Tennessee Tech in Cookeville; Tennessee State in Nashville; and the University of Memphis.
    
The schools currently are governed by the Tennessee Board of Regents, which also governs 13 community colleges and 27 technical colleges.
    
Aims McGuinness is a senior fellow with the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems. At a Tuesday meeting of the Senate Higher Education Subcommittee, McGuinness said there is no one structure that is the gold standard. But he warned big governance changes require careful planning.

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