Press Releases | Freedom of Expression

ACTA Condemns University of Connecticut Chancellor for Undermining Academic Freedom

May 12, 2000

WASHINGTON, DC—The American Council of Trustees and Alumni today condemned University of Connecticut interim chancellor Dr. Fred Maryanski for investigating the University’s Center for Survey Research and Analysis and called on him to rescind his decision immediately.

Maryanski initiated a “Task Force” investigation after the Center issued a survey, commissioned by the Connecticut Association of Scholars, which found that a majority of public university faculty in the state opposed racial preferences in academic hiring and admissions. A number of organizations have deplored the survey results and questioned its findings.

“Apparently Dr. Maryanski believes in academic freedom only when it produces ‘politically correct’ results,” said ACTA vice president and general counsel Anne D. Neal. “This is an egregious example of using administrative action to discourage the objective survey research for which the Center is famous.”

“It is wrong-headed for college administrators to second-guess institutions on campus simply because they have reported controversial points of view,” Neal wrote in a letter to the chancellor. “Your action sends only one message—the wrong one—namely, that people on campus better stay away from politically incorrect issues or risk being subject to administrative review and intimidation.”

“We call on you immediately to rescind the investigation and confirm the University’s adherence to principles of academic freedom and free speech,” said Neal.

A copy of the letter was forwarded to the University president and its board of trustees.

The American Council of Trustees and Alumni is a national organization of alumni and trustees dedicated to academic freedom, excellence, and accountability.


Launched in 1995, we are the only organization that works with alumni, donors, trustees, and education leaders across the United States to support liberal arts education, uphold high academic standards, safeguard the free exchange of ideas on campus, and ensure that the next generation receives an intellectually rich, high-quality college education at an affordable price.

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