Baylor University President Ken Starr late Friday announced that he has received an investigation he asked a law professor to perform on the university's handling of sexual assault accusations against a football player. The university asked the law professor to investigate after an article in Texas Monthly alleged that the university may have known that the player had previously been suspended from another team over violent behavior. Furthering the criticism, a jury found the player, Samuel Ukwuachu, guilty of the Baylor sexual assault Aug. 20, but the university -- with its lower burden of proof -- never took action against the player and was expected to add him to its football team’s defense this season.
Friday's announcement did not say what the investigation found, but said another investigation would soon start. "I am recommending that our Board of Regents retain the services of outside counsel to investigate thoroughly these matters and recommend continued improvements. The board plans to announce its selection of outside counsel early next week," a statement from Starr said.
A video is circulating among South Carolina media organizations showing someone confronting the former president of North Greenville University in a private home with a female staff member, The Greenville News reported. James Epting, the former president, declined to comment. The video was apparently shot in October 2014, shortly before the university announced that Epting would be taking a sabbatical and then resigning.
Beverly Hawkins, chairwoman of the Christian college's board, released a statement that said: “North Greenville University’s leaders are expected to lead Christ-centered lives and abide by all campus policies and procedures. The administration and faculty on campus today reflect our legal, moral and ethical expectations. We take our responsibilities as leaders of a Christian institution seriously and hold each member of our community to the highest of standards."
Two top officials of Portland State University's foundation have resigned in the wake of an embarrassing incident in which the university invited many to the expected announcement of a $100 million gift, but called the event off when the gift failed to materialize, The Oregonian reported. The would-be donor turned out to be someone who might not have had the money in the first place, and questions have been raised about whether the donor was vetted.
An in-depth article in The Globe & Mail explores the year that Arvind Gupta was president of the University of British Columbia, one of Canada's top institutions. Gupta's surprise departure has not been explained, setting off much speculation on and off campus and many questions about the board at UBC. According to the article, Gupta succeeded in his year in office in building good working relationships with faculty members. But changes he made in the administrator ranks left many administrators (and apparently board members) feeling frustrated. The article says that board members thought Gupta was making changes in the leadership ranks without getting enough board buy-in.
Wednesday and Thursday saw several shootings -- one resulting in a student death -- and other security incidents on campuses. Here is a round-up of local press reports:
Savannah State University announced today that a student died at a local hospital to which he was taken after being shot in an altercation at the student union. The university has delayed classes this morning until 10 a.m. and has grief counselors on site.
Fraternity members at an off-campus house near Old Dominion University are under fire for hanging sexist "welcome" signs -- behavior that offends many, but is a crude tradition at many colleges. Until now, few academic leaders have spoken out.
Newark's Essex County College tried adaptive learning software to improve remedial math success rates. It hasn't worked, as students and faculty have struggled with the "self-regulated" approach to learning.