Page A6: “In public remarks Monday, the leader of the board, Rector Helen E. Dragas, sought a resolute but contrite tone. She expressed regret — not for removing Sullivan, but for how the transition was executed.”
Please, God. I am interested in this story. I want to get swept up in it. Please. Just tell me who Teresa Sullivan is and why she was fired. Please.
The Board stands by its decision. But former president John T. Casteen supports Sullivan. He doesn’t say why she was fired.
Maybe I’ll just check the Internet.
I am 20 paragraphs into the story when I learn that the board pressed Sullivan to make “deep, top-down cuts” to the university, “potentially eroding the university’s portfolio of core programs.”
Why did the university want the cuts? Is UVA having budget problems? If it is, why?
And did the university in fact ask Sullivan to make the cuts? Post “reporters” De Vise and Kumar quote Sullivan on why she was fired, but no one else. Is what she says accurate?
“A university that does not teach the full range of arts and sciences will no longer be a university,” Sullivan says. “Certainly it will no longer be respected as such by its former peers.”
What programs does UVA want to cut?
Is UVA having a budget problem? It’s a famous school — how is that possible?
Maybe I’ll call my brother. He went to UVA.
The story concludes: “Sullivan’s ouster has taken an incalculable toll, according to [board leader Helen] Dragas and others, in terms of potential for loss of donors, faculty defections and censure from higher education leaders. The action has spawned more than a dozen letters of protest and no-confidence votes from various campus constituencies.”
Forty years after Watergate, The Washington Post has run, on its front page, a story that would get returned if one of my high school journalism students submitted it.
I threw the paper away and spotted my neighbor outside. Hey, I think she went to UVA. I opened the door.
“Hey — who is Teresa Sullivan and why was she fired?”
Mark Judge is the author of A Tremor of Bliss: Sex, Catholicism, and Rock ‘n’ Roll.