Cameron Morgan, Chattanooga, Tenn. — A banner was posted late Monday night in the UC lobby with the words “Fire Chad Clark” written in red marker. The banner has since been removed.
It is still unknown who posted the banner, but it comes after several cases have come to light disclosing that Dean Clark has lost testimony and allegedly coerced student testimonies in student conduct board cases.
Clark deferred comments to University Relations.
“This campus is committed to creating a safe and inclusive place for all of our students, faculty and staff,” wrote UTC spokesperson Chuck Cantrell in an email this afternoon responding to the banner.
“The Dean of Students Office, Student Conduct, the Women’s Center and the Title IX Coordinator are all working together to examine UTC’s sexual misconduct and relationship violence policies and procedures. An independent investigation by the Office of Equity and Diversity in conjunction with the University of Tennessee Office of the General Counsel is also looking to verify that policies were followed appropriately [in the student conduct cases].”
Cantrell also cites a campus Sexual Misconduct and Relationship Violence Prevention Committee — inclusive of many areas across campus and including a student representative — that is discussing policy, procedures and training and education.
According to Cantrell, additional measures are being taken by the University to increase student feedback.
“UTC is also conducting a survey to measure students’ knowledge, perceptions, and experiences with various topics, including alcohol and drug use, sexual and physical experiences, and overall campus climate,” wrote Cantrell. “We will use the results of this anonymous survey to make our campus a healthier and safer environment.”
Students can complete the survey at: http://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/2062734/University-of-Tennessee-at-Chattanooga-Campus-Climate-Survey
Student Activists for Equality (SAFE) formed to address concerns that ‘the administration is not adequately responding to student concerns,’ such as those expressed during the Title IX open forum earlier this semester and, more recently, in regards to student conduct cases.
In a previous interview with the University Echo about SAFE, student activist Jefferson Hodge, senior from Athens, Tenn., said that the discontent on campus has grown among students.
“I’m not generally a person who is about calling for someone to resign,” said Hodge. “I think it’s important when you’re talking about a system that’s failing people, you’re talking about the system, not the people within the system.
“However, [Clark’s] name has appeared every time there’s a problem with the system,” said Hodge.
In his position with SAFE, Hodge says that they have tried to educate students, and will be taking direct action to increase their activist message on campus.
Hodge said that SAFE was not affiliated with the banner and does not know who posted it.