In this episode we discuss the AAUP’s new investigative report on the summary suspension and dismissal of Dr. Mark McPhail, at Indiana University Northwest.
In September 2021, the administration dispatched campus police officers to McPhail’s home to inform him that he had been dismissed and banned from campus, supposedly for making racially charged threats of physical violence. No accuser was identified, and no criminal charges were filed.
An AAUP investigation found that, in acting against McPhail, the administration disregarded AAUP-supported standards of academic due process. The committee deemed “implausible” the charge that McPhail had made violent threats, and it found “highly credible” McPhail’s allegation that the administration’s actions were prompted by his criticism of the administration’s handling of racial equity issues and therefore violated his academic freedom.
The guests are Afshan Jafar, a professor of Sociology at Connecticut College, and the chair of the investigative committee for the report, and Mark Criley, a senior program officer in the AAUP’s Department of Academic Freedom, Tenure, and Governance, who staffed the investigation. The episode is hosted by Mariah Quinn, AAUP’s digital organizer.