Gallaudet Presidential Appointment Revoked

WASHINGTON – Jane Fernandes, the former provost of Gallaudet University who was originally selected to become the school’s next president, will not be taking the position after all. Gallaudet’s board of trusties revoked her appointment Oct. 29.

The move comes after weeks of protests by students and faculty members who believed Fernandes would not properly address problems with enrollment, diversity and graduation rates. A faculty vote held just recently indicated that 82 percent of teachers at the school did not want Fernandes to become president of the university.

Students criticized her as having an uneven grasp of sign language. Furthermore, a black presidential candidate was not among the three finalists, prompting student accusations of racism in addition to audism, the label applied to any activity that may be construed as prejudiced against the deaf or hard of hearing.

This is not the first time protests have forced a president from office. Elisabeth Zinser resigned shortly after taking in office in 1988.

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