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Catholic University Prof Fired Over Sexual Relationship With Grad Student

Catholic University Prof Fired Over Sexual Relationship With Grad Student

“policy explicitly bars any romantic relationships between faculty members or administrators and those they supervise”

This shouldn’t be a surprise, it’s just a Catholic school acting like a Catholic school for once.

Inside Higher Ed reports:

Professor Fired Over Relationship

Catholic University announced Thursday that it has fired Stephen McKenna, a tenured associate professor of media and communication studies, for having a sexual relationship with a graduate student whom he hired as an assistant.

A university statement said he hired the assistant when he was serving as a department chair. The assistant was a graduate student in another department, and they became sexually involved shortly after she was hired. The university received an anonymous tip about the allegation last year but was unable to get detailed information. But then the employee contacted the university about the relationship.

Catholic referred the matter to a faculty committee, which determined that McKenna had violated university rules with the relationship and that dismissal would be an “appropriate” response. The university’s board this week acted on the faculty committee’s report and fired McKenna.

University policy explicitly bars any romantic relationships between faculty members or administrators and those they supervise. The relevant policy states, “A consensual dating or sexual relationship between a staff employee, a member of the faculty (including adjunct faculty) and a student, or an employee that the staff/faculty directly supervises, is prohibited when the staff/faculty has any current or foreseeable professional responsibility for the student or the employee … Voluntary consent by the student/employee in such a relationship is suspect, given the fundamental nature of such a relationship.” The policy also states that “violation of this prohibition may result in disciplinary action including dismissal for unprofessional conduct.”

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Comments

Well, if it’s true, that’s great that somebody actually bothered to follow their own policies. Is there any EVIDENCE of such a relationship, though? Haven’t we learned ANYTHING from the Star Chambers run in colleges about making assumptions about guilt?

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