Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Ethics Professor Found Unethical at Heart of UNC Scandal

Ethics Professor Found Unethical at Heart of UNC Scandal:

Professor Jeanette M. Boxill has come to the center of the UNC Chapel Hill scandal that sent student-athletes through classes that would give them As and Bs for nothing.

Boxill served as faculty chair, a senior lecturer in ethics, and an academic counselor for athletes at Chapel Hill. She was complicit in steering students into fake classes to maintain their eligibility in the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the Chronicle of Higher Education reported.

Several people were implicated in the breakdown, but Boxill stands out, primarily because of her job as director of the university’s center on ethics–a word that Boxhill herself doesn’t seem to understand. The Chronicle of Higher Education reports:

She grew up poor herself and had an affinity for underprivileged students. And, like several other colleagues who made questionable choices, she bled Carolina blue.

As faculty and staff members step back from this week’s storm, many are still conflicted about the role Ms. Boxill played. But some have harsh words for their colleague.

“I don’t think she’s evil, but she violated standards of academic integrity and did it knowingly,” said Jay M. Smith, a history professor and founder of an athletics-reform group on the campus.

But her greater sin, Mr. Smith said, is that she appeared to cover it up.

“She has been knowingly dishonest about her role in this scam the last three years,” he said. “She has obstructed those of us who wanted to get to the bottom of things.”
On October 23, the Washington Post reported the scandal was found to help students beyond student-athletes, sending more than 3,100 students–less than half of them athletes–through “one or more semesters of deficient instruction” within the African and Afro-American studies department, including classes that existed only on paper.