Essex county community college online classes
MORE: Recent Barry Carter columns Durden, without an explanation, informed her students, who were still waiting for her to arrive, that class was canceled.
That confused her students: Durden had always told them that she would never be absent unless "she had died.'' She didn't have a reason. During the contentious discussion with Carlson, Durden never identified herself as a professor at the college.
Since joining the faculty, Wager said, class feedback about Durden has been "effusively positive,'' and she has a "following of students that really liked the fact that she brought real- world media experience to the classroom.'' Durden has appeared on other Fox programs, including "Fox and Friends" and "The Kelly Files with Megyn Kelly." If it wasn't a problem then when she was vocal on political and race issues, why now?
The college certainly didn't mind in March, when Durden was a panelist on a school-sponsored program that gives you a good idea that she speaks her mind.
"As this suspension will become public in the world of academia -- and especially in black public intellectual circles -- it will bring more negative publicity to our institution even as we are trying to move forward with our new president.'' MORE CARTER: Greater Newark Fresh Air Fund needs your help to send kids to camp Wager, who recommended Durden for employment, said her colleague has been an asset to the college even before getting hired in January.
"For those of us who are involved in advocacy, politics, who may hold opinions which differ from those in different spaces, this kind of thing has a terrible chilling effect,'' Rebecca Williams, an assistant professor, wrote in her letter to the administration.
"It seems to me they're going to make up some reason. The general counsel has handled this matter in a way that complies with New Jersey state law.
I am not at liberty to provide further details.'' Durden, who wants to be reinstated, is fuming, believing her right to free speech has been trampled.
About five of them went to the Human Resources Department the day of the suspension seeking answers about their grades and to find out what was happening to Durden.
"I think she was done wrong,'' said Demond Hill, 45.
"I find it shocking that an African-American woman would be so disrespected at her place of employment for merely exercising her First Amendment right to free speech,'' said Professor Jennifer Wager.