USC President and Provost Censured by Faculty Senate Over Commencement Controversy

At the University of Southern California, the faculty’s Academic Senate made a significant decision to censure President Carol Folt and Provost Andrew Guzman for their handling of the recent commencement controversy.

During a lengthy meeting, faculty members voiced their concerns about the administration’s choice to exclude valedictorian Asna Tabassum’s speech from the commencement ceremony, which ultimately led to the cancellation of all commencement speakers and the main graduation ceremony.

Moreover, faculty members were displeased with the administration’s management of pro-Palestinian demonstrators on campus, resulting in the arrest of 93 individuals by the LAPD.

The Academic Senate passed a resolution, with a notable vote of 21-7, expressing widespread dissatisfaction and concern regarding the administration’s handling of the commencement-related issues.

The resolution also called for the immediate formation of a task force to investigate events on campus related to the Middle East conflict in recent months, with a public report expected by mid-September.

In response to the resolution, President Folt expressed openness to engaging with the newly formed task force alongside Provost Guzman. Meanwhile, the university is directing its attention towards celebrating the accomplishments of the Class of 2024 with a “Trojan Family Graduate Celebration” scheduled at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on May 9th.

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