The members of the Undergraduate Assembly officially added their voices to the hundreds of students and alumni calling for the reversal of History professor Ronald Granieri’s tenure denial.
In a unanimous vote at last night’s meeting, the body passed a resolution calling for the School of Arts and Sciences to increase transparency in the tenure process and for SAS Dean Rebecca Bushnell to overturn the decision of the SAS Personnel Committee to deny Granieri’s application for tenure.
“We are going to pursue this energetically,” College junior and UA Chairman Alec Webley said. “I am confident that even if we are not able to persuade the dean to overrule the Personnel Committee that we will be able to shed more light on the tenure process and emphasize that SAS needs world class teachers just as much as it needs world class researchers.”
About half of Granieri’s senior honors thesis class, which has been leading the charge to get the tenure denial overturned, attended the meeting to show support for the resolution. Their classmate, College senior and UA member Zac Byer, authored the resolution that was brought to the UA.
“Now we can be speaking on behalf of all undergraduates,” Byer said, noting that there has also been considerable support for Granieri among graduate students, professors and alumni as well. An online petition calling for the decision to be overturned that began circulating Wednesday morning had nearly 500 signatures on Sunday night.
“I’ve heard from alumni that this decision encourages them to withhold making donations to Penn, and in a time when there’s not much expendable income, a decision like this drops Penn to the bottom of the list,” he said.
Granieri was denied tenure in early March by the SAS Personnel Committee, a group of faculty representing the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. Bushnell has the power to send Granieri’s tenure application to the Provost Staff Conference, the next step in the tenure review process. Bushnell has repeatedly declined to comment on the case, citing the confidentiality of faculty appointment and promotion decisions.Comments powered by Disqus
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