(UnitedHeadlines.com) – Amid controversy, Claudine Gay, 53, resigned from her role as the president of Harvard University on Jan. 2.
In a letter to the school community, she announced she would be stepping down from her role, saying it is “not a decision I came to easily.” She added that her resignation “is in the best interests of Harvard” so Harvard can “focus on the institution rather than any individual.”
The announcement comes as she faced backlash and calls for her resignation amid allegations of plagiarism related to her academic writings and for her response to antisemitism on college campuses.
Gay first faced calls to resign after she also did not condemn the more than 30 Harvard student groups that called Israel “entirely responsible” for the Oct. 7 terror attack by Hamas in a letter that was published. She again faced calls to resign following her testimony during a congressional hearing over her answers to questions regarding antisemitism on college campuses across the country. During her Dec. 5 testimony, Gay refused to say that anyone at Harvard who was calling for the genocide of Jews would be punished under Harvard’s bullying and harassment rules.
Despite Harvard losing a reported $1 billion in donations, Harvard announced at the time that she would remain as president, issuing a letter from faculty that stated the administration not to bow to political pressure.
Gay then faced allegations of plagiarism in her academic work, including in her doctoral thesis. Reports revealed that Harvard had previously covered up its own investigation into her plagiarism. When she announced her resignation, Gay was accused of almost 50 instances of plagiarism.
A Political Science professor who has been a Harvard faculty member since 2006, Gay became the first black woman to serve as president in the 386-year history of Harvard when she was named to the role in July 2023. Her time as president is the shortest in Harvard’s history. She will remain a faculty member at the University.
Until a full-time replacement is hired, Harvard’s Provost and Chief Academic Officer Alan M. Garber will serve as interim president.
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