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American Association of University Professors Censures Two Universities

The American Association of University Professors (AAUP) has censured two universities and sanctioned another one for violating various generally accepted standards of college and university governance.

The Association added St. Edward’s University in Texas and Nunez Community College in Louisiana to the AAUP’s list of administrations censured for violating the principles of academic freedom and tenure, which was jointly formulated in 1940 by the AAUP and the Association of American Colleges.

Vermont Law School was also added to list of institutions sanctioned for serious departures from generally accepted standards of college and university governance, as set forth in the Statement on Government of Colleges and Universities. Both of the decisions were made during the delegates to the 105th Annual Meeting of the association.

Regarding St. Edward’s censure, delegates cited the cases of two tenured faculty members who criticized the administration for not affording them academic due process, and the non-renewal of another tenure-track faculty member.

“General conditions for academic freedom and governance at St. Edward’s University were found to be “abysmal,” with “fear and demoralization” widespread among the faculty,” AAUP said in a statement.

Nunez Community College has been accused of firing an associate professor of English, violating the professor’s academic freedom to speak on institutional matters without fear of reprisal.

Finally, Vermont Law School’s faculty restructuring process was found to be in violation of set standards of academic governance, resulting in lowering salaries, reducing the number of full-time positions, and effectively eliminating the tenured status of nearly 75 percent of the institution’s highest paid faculty members.

The Association also announced the removal of Idaho State University from its sanctioned list and an investigation into the actions of the governing board of the Maricopa County Community College District.

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