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Liberal Faculty Members Flee Florida’s New College Following DeSantis Takeover

Liberal Faculty Members Flee Florida’s New College Following DeSantis Takeover

“Those who prefer left-wing orthodoxy, DEI, and gender pronouns on every email can find those features in many other universities.”

The academic left has been throwing a fit ever since Governor Ron DeSantis appointed some conservatives to the board of trustees at Florida’s New College.

The changes have been swift. In March, the new appointees shuttered the school’s DEI office. In April, there was a heavily publicized battle over tenure.

Now some members of the faculty are hitting the road.

The Washington Examiner reports:

New College of Florida’s liberal faculty flee as DeSantis trustees remake school

The liberal faculty members of the New College of Florida are reportedly in a hurry to leave the school and find new jobs after Gov. Ron DeSantis’s (R-FL) takeover.

As much as one-third of the school’s faculty are leaving their jobs at the Florida college as a new crop of conservative trustees appointed by DeSantis continues to press forward with their plans to turn the school into a classical liberal arts institution in the model of the renowned conservative institution of Hillsdale College in Michigan.

As many as 36 faculty members have packed up their offices and quit their jobs, the Tampa Bay Times reported this week. Due to the high turnover, the school is expected to turn to temporary positions as a stop-gap measure while the long-term faculty hiring process, which can take up to a year, takes place.

Liz Leininger, a professor of biology, was among those faculty members who have left the New College in recent months.

In a series of tweets, Leininger, who taught neurobiology and gender studies at New College, said she has taken a job as the chairwoman of the neuroscience department at St. Mary’s College in Maryland and that her career move was not planned.

Conservative education activist Chris Rufo, who has been involved in these changes since the beginning, responded:

The Tampa Bay Times has more on this:

“The majority of faculty who have left have not given us any kind of consideration, or notice, or thought or anything,” interim president Richard Corcoran said at a July 6 trustee meeting. Long-term hiring decisions in academia typically take a year or more, and with this year’s hiring season long gone, the school will rely on temporary positions to fill the gap.

New College has already recruited 10 new visiting faculty, with another six positions still under negotiation, Thiessen said. The school will be launching a visiting “presidential scholar” position and hopes to recruit notable scholars to fill the position on a temporary basis.

The left’s control of higher education is so massive that they take it for granted.

They cannot stand the idea of even one school being changed in this way.


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It takes a “year” to find and hire new instructors and chair heads, yet it only took few weeks/months for Dr. Liz Leininger to find a new place to spread her CRT poison.

    stevewhitemd in reply to Tiki. | July 20, 2023 at 6:26 pm

    As a faculty person myself, no, it did not take “only a few weeks/months” for Dr. Leininger to find her new position. That likely took 8 to 12 months as most faculty searches do, especially if tenure is involved. That means she started planning her departure last fall or winter. It’s possible that St. Mary’s hired her on an accelerated basis, but regular faculty positions are hard to come by these days, and the competition (even with DEI credits) would be substantial.

JohnSmith100 | July 20, 2023 at 5:31 pm

Dry 13200 & about 16,000 loaded

36 out of how many?

JohnSmith100 | July 20, 2023 at 5:37 pm

DeSantis is good for Florida, now fix the other universities in Florida,

not_a_lawyer | July 20, 2023 at 5:38 pm

Properly understood, this is a good thing.

You cannot change the nature of the education at a college without changing up the faculty.


    PrincetonAl in reply to not_a_lawyer. | July 20, 2023 at 6:06 pm

    Absolutely. Hard to get rid of a tenured progressive professor … but if they quit it’s easy to start hiring good ones

    Let’s hope this is the start of many more universities heading down this road in red states.

    Where are the other governors at on this issue?

      Dimsdale in reply to PrincetonAl. | July 21, 2023 at 2:42 pm

      There are numerous adjuncts fully qualified to do the job, and are effectively already doing it for the deadwood professors.

Well, bye.

Today on campus, a ‘classical liberal’ is a conservative.

    Thad Jarvis in reply to Whitewall. | July 20, 2023 at 6:00 pm

    Wait until these shrieking self absorbed ninnies find out how tight the job market is in higher education. They may have some hope if they declare themselves asylum seekers from the fascist Florida Fourth Reich and other universities want to show off their bona fides by taking in “refugees.”

retiredcantbefired | July 20, 2023 at 6:08 pm

I wonder what disciplines some of these professors are in.

Even impeccably Leftist academics with good connections can’t always find another permanent position this quickly.

What if they’re in philosophy, for instance?

BierceAmbrose | July 20, 2023 at 6:10 pm

Interesting clash between the people who pay for the “eduction” system, to do what they want, and the people who think it’s their job to tell them what indoctrination they should pay for.

Wow, that easy? How do we get some conservatives on the board of trustees of every public university in the US?

She taught neurobiology AND gender studies? All you need to know about the current state of science in academia, right there.

Florida has an excellent scholarship program called “Bright Futures” for state residents. I hope New College will provide a closer and less expensive alternative to Hillsdale. Florida community college Dual Enrollment credits (an excellent alternative to government school Advanced Placement for high school juniors and seniors) are also more likely to be accepted by Florida colleges and universities.

As many as 36 faculty members have packed up their offices and quit their jobs.

An excellent result which saves the time and hassle of firing them and increases the speed with which the Augean stables of their classrooms may be cleaned out.

Godspeed New College. You have a fresh canvas, create a masterwork.

E Howard Hunt | July 20, 2023 at 8:40 pm

I know of an available former Stanford Dean it might be fun to interview.

thad_the_man | July 20, 2023 at 9:55 pm

This goes back to my feelings of student loan forgiveness. Which is to let students. restructure their loans to reduce their burdens and put some of that on the University.

I’m open to discussing methods but here are some basic ideas.

The student is required to pay 3/4 of the loan, the University is required to pay the rest including the interest.

A university with a high default rate or a high dropout rate is required to cosign the loans. ( A lot of state funded universities encourage students to enroll that they know will drop out, because funding is determined by enrollment in the first few weeks. So they get the funding for drop outs without having to teach them. )

I agree that students should live up to their foolishness , but at the same time we have consumer protection laws on things like usuary. payday loans, MLM schemes, lemon laws etc . to buffer people from making mistakes which cost their whole lives.

Make it costly for universities to create high paid burger flippers, and they will make sure that they don’t produce high paid burger flippers.

healthguyfsu | July 20, 2023 at 10:50 pm

This is exactly the business model needed for liberal arts colleges. With the big unis trying to go super woke, their really is no place in the market for the liberal arts colleges. Their best move is to offer something different. I hope that New College succeeds….if it isn’t sabotaged by bad faith accreditors and other bad actors.

inspectorudy | July 20, 2023 at 11:15 pm

“As many as 36 faculty members have packed up their offices and quit their jobs.”
Think how great this was for the college! No long drawn-out battles over anything. No money owed and no resumes offered. Just “Don’t let the door hit you in the a$$ on your way out”.

“I’m leaving AND fighting. For academic freedom, and for inclusive and equitable public education…”

Mutually incompatible goals.

One way to play this, if you’re thinking about attending New College:

Give them a year or two in order for them to get themselves organized and established.

Meanwhile, you can use that time in order to work. Why work? Because that’s how most people obtain money — for food, clothes, shelter (I’m speaking to 18-yr-old Americans here.). Job skills. Work experience — these are good things to have as you go forward in life.

Then in a year or two you enroll at New College and both you and they will very likely get more from the whole experience.

Good luck.

henrybowman | July 21, 2023 at 3:46 am

Geez, DeSantis is more effective than Orkin!

Steven Brizel | July 21, 2023 at 8:26 am

Good riddance! Looking forward to reading Rufo’s new book on the long marchof the left through Anerican institutions

Capitalist-Dad | July 21, 2023 at 9:05 am

Seems like a big benefit when the departing professors are leaving because their indoctrination fun and ability to bilk students with required DIE courses is over. Don’t let the door hit you in the rump Commies. Bye, bye!

There’s always opportunities for such people in North Korea or Cuba, go for it!

A few may find a warm welcome from Oberlin.

We conservatives here in the Sunshine State continue to encourage any liberal to leave us by train, plain, boat or automobile.