Residual Income

ROE is calculated as net income / average equity but it seems for the purposes of RI models income is calculated as beginning equity x ROE. I’m curious about the inconsistency unless of course I’m missing something?

You’re not missing anything; the two methods for calculating ROE are different because they’re used for different purposes. Just remember which to use when (use only beginning Equity only for the residual income calculation), and you’ll be fine.