The president of Harvard University resigns amid controversy

The president of Harvard University resigns amid controversy

The president of the prestigious American University of Harvard, Claudine Gay, announced her resignation on Tuesday, after accusations of plagiarism and a tense congressional hearing on combating anti-Semitism on campuses.

“With a heavy heart, but with deep love for Harvard, I write to announce that I will step down from my position as president,” Claudine Guy said in her resignation letter released Tuesday.

The 53-year-old political science professor, who in July became Harvard's first black president, has come under fire in recent weeks.

She was targeted by accusations of plagiarism related to her university work, fueled by a conservative website, and by criticism related to her responses, during a parliamentary hearing on combating anti-Semitism in universities, to elected Republican official Elise Stefanik, who likened some students’ calls for an “uprising” to incitement to “exterminate Jews in Israel and around the world.”

“It was complicated to see my commitments to confronting hate and upholding academic rigor questioned,” she said in her letter. “It was frightening to be the subject of personal attacks and threats fueled by racism.”

She became the second president of the Ivy League – which includes eight highly prestigious universities – to resign. In December, UPenn (Philadelphia) President Elizabeth Magill, who was also criticized for her comments during the same hearing, resigned.

More than 70 parliamentarians, including two Democrats, as well as former students and well-known donors, have called for Ms. Gay's departure. However, the president received support from the educational community and was retained in her position in mid-December.

His presidency was the shortest in the history of the university, which was founded in 1636.

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About the Author: Hermínio Guimarães

"Introvertido premiado. Viciado em mídia social sutilmente charmoso. Praticante de zumbis. Aficionado por música irritantemente humilde."

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