Following the abrupt firing of College of Arts and Sciences Dean Howard Marchitello in October, the faculty of Rutgers University-Camden are currently in the process of voting on a no confidence resolution in Chancellor Antonio Tillis and Provost Daniel Hart. Voting began yesterday and will end tomorrow at 3 p.m.
Marchitello, who remains a tenured member of the faculty despite his dismissal from the deanship, has said that Tillis was directly responsible; many faculty have since speculated that the cause was Marchitello’s comments on pay inequity and underfunding at the university.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Marchitello himself did not directly allege that his comments were the cause for his departure, but said that “it doesn’t seem unreasonable that faculty think that might be the case.”
Since then, the faculty union has led a charge against Tillis and Hart, both for Marchitello’s apparently retaliatory dismissal as well as the lack of an immediate replacement for his position.
“This faculty vote is specifically about whether we have trust and confidence in a leadership team that fired a dean mid-semester without a clear explanation or any succession plan in place,” said Jim Brown, a professor at the university as well as the head of its faculty union. “But this isn’t the end of what we need to do in asserting our role in shaping what happens at our campus and our university. This isn’t the end but a beginning – and an invitation to repair the damage that has been done at Rutgers-Camden.”