A theory of what led to Sullivan’s ouster

“This institution will be based on the illimitable freedom of the human mind. For here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it.”
– Thomas Jefferson to William Roscoe, 27 December 1820

This one’s for you, TJ.

I write this post as a proud UVA alumna (CLAS ’01), one who knows the devotion we alums share for the education we received at Virginia. UVA offers one of the best public educations in the nation, and it’s open to all who meet its rigorous standards. UVA is an institution with an incredible sense of groundedness, as well as a dynamic, thoughtful group of students, faculty, and administrators who care deeply about the place. For better and sometimes for worse, Mr. Jefferson’s University, TheUniversity, has not been easily moved by the fashions of the day. It’s a place where reason and truth are valued, and where students and faculty do not simply shrug off questionable actions as par for the course. It’s no surprise, then, that the lack of clarity and transparency over the sudden resignation of our President this past Sunday is eating away at many of us.

I am also a writer and historian, currently finishing up a Ph.D. in History at Duke University. The research skills I’ve learned at Duke and Virginia have enabled me to know where and how to find information quickly. When the news broke of President Sullivan’s sudden resignation from UVA, I became very curious. Sullivan arrived at UVA as a highly respected administrator of public higher education, one of the best in the business. Something must have gone very amiss for her to agree to resign in this way.

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