Pitt faculty accused of inappropriate behavior toward female students and staff

A Ms. Magazine blog post accuses Pitt’s Communication Department of sexual harassment and inappropriate relationships with graduate students

Ms. Magazine, an American liberal feminist magazine, posted a blog last Wednesday, December 13, accusing Pitt's Communications Department of sexual harassment and discrimination against female graduate students and faculty.

The post, written by former Pitt Arts and Sciences staff member Carol Stabile, details upsetting events that occured more than 10 years ago. Stabile claims that one "colleague liked to talk about 'the erotics of the classroom,' a phrase used in faculty meetings and conversations to justify their sexual interest in students." One graduate student "was promised a tenure track job if she slept with [the department chair]."

When confronted about complaints regarding serial relationships with graduate students, one faculty member said "We can't help who we fall in love with," to justify the continuous unprofessional relationships professors would instigate.

Chancellor Gallagher sent out an email at 9am this morning explaining the next steps for the university. In it, he says, "First and foremost: Our top priority is the safety, security, and well-being of our students and our employees."

He then goes on to state the school's Title IX Office is leading a full investigation into the Department of Communication's present culture and practices, and that the school will also be initiating an "external review of previous claims related to the department that date back more than a decade."

Read the full statement below:

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University of Pittsburgh