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How Carol Folt works

By Joe Asch
Posted Monday, May 20, 2013

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Hanover, NH - Perhaps the best way to understand the events of the past few weeks is as the final expression of Carol Folt’s ugly view of Dartmouth. She and a small number of professors have taken the current situation and used it to fit their politics and their agenda for the College. The effort became clear on Tuesday, April 23, when the decision to shut down the College for a day was made by a small, insider set of Folt loyalists, as The D described as follows:

As a result of the [RealTalkers’] letter, over two dozen faculty and administrators met this morning to discuss how to respond to the aftermath of Friday’s protest, sociology department chair Kathryn Lively said. Associate dean of student academic support services Inge-Lise Ameer led the meeting, and Folt, Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson and the student protesters were all in attendance.

In fact, there were several meetings that took place between the Dimensions disruption and the shutdown. Let’s detail the core group of people at these meetings, the ones who made the decision to shut down the College for the day: Interim President Carol Folt, Dean of the Faculty Michael Mastanduno, Sociology Chair Kathryn Lively, Associate Dean of Student Academic Support Services Inge-Lise Ameer, Dean of the College Charlotte Johnson, Women’s and Gender Studies Professor Michael Bronski, Women’s and Gender Studies Chair Ivy Schweitzer, the members of the RealTalk group, and a number of other faculty and staff members of a like-minded political bent.

The question arises as to how the people at the meetings came to be there. According to Bronski, as reported by The D:

Protesters explained the weekend’s events and discussed the fiery criticism they have received since, women’s and gender studies professor Michael Bronski said. A wide range of faculty were asked to attend the meeting, including those from the women’s and gender studies, economics, biology and history departments.

After the discussion, the faculty decided unanimously to cancel classes on Wednesday. Bronski added that some faculty members are considering holding discussions on Thursday after classes resume.

The D further reported that:

Interim College President Carol Folt stressed that the decision to cancel class on Wednesday was not a direct response to the protesters, but based on a consensus among faculty that threats against students brought the College to a “tipping point” that demanded greater action.

The emphatic words “wide range,” “unanimous,” and “consensus” give the game away, for there was no such accord among the faculty at large — only among the small group specifically selected by Folt to attend the meetings. In fact, almost all of the College’s faculty members were unaware that these meetings were taking place. I’ve inquired of members of a half-dozen academic departments, including the economics and history departments listed above, and they heard nothing at all in advance about the meetings.

For someone who can’t go an entire paragraph without using words like “diversity,” “inclusiveness,” and “transparency,” Carol Folt sure knows how to stack the deck by organizing meetings attended only by people who will support her agenda. How clever. How intellectually dishonest. How typical of Folt.

Joe Asch is a 1979 graduate of Dartmouth College and a 1983 graduate of the Yale Law School. He writes, a daily blog about Dartmouth College.

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How Carol Folt works
A different view of the newest UNC Chapel Hill chancellor, Carol Folt, than you see in the Carolina Alumni review.

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