The Dartmouth Observer

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Monday, October 03, 2005
Professorial discontent at Dartmouth

The loss of Michael Gazzaniga, Jon Appleton, and Jim Kuypers -- three of Dartmouth's most distinguished faculty members -- bodes unwell for the College. They will be missed as teachers and scholars; Gazzaniga, in particular, strikes me as being almost irreplaceable (something even his soon-to-be erstwhile colleagues admit). But of greater concern are the circumstances surrounding their departure, which are disturbingly similar. Each of the departing trio has been at odds, either implicitly or explicitly, with the Dean of the Faculty Carol Folt. Gazzaniga was Folt's predecessor and resigned as Dean because of "differences among faculty members" over his management style; most likely, the same faculty who voted him out voted Folt in. Appleton (a supporter of Gazzaniga) and Kuypers have both cited Folt as a reason for their departure. All three have chosen to leave despite their fondness for Dartmouth's students. As Joe writes, "These professors were not hired away. They jumped ship." This had better not become a trend. There are more discontented Dartmouth faculty at the moment than just these three.