DePaul University Professor Norman G. Finkelstein met with the University Board on Tenure and Promotion on Friday, April 13, 2007. The board consists of seven faculty members and the provost, Dr Helmut Epp. Reports are that Dr Finkelstein’s appearance lasted 1:20 minutes which is considerably longer than the norm. Reports are that the session was quite direct. The provost will send his recommendation and that of the University Board on Tenure and Promotion to the president of the university, The Reverend Dennis H. Holtschneider, C.M., Ed.D. This process is similar to the Suchar Memorandum in which he sent the recommendation of the College Personnel Committee along with his own to the University Board on Tenure and Promotion. Were the University Board on Tenure and Promotion to vote in favour of tenure, this would constitute the THIRD positive faculty body assessment. Both the College Personnel Committee of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Department of Political Science, in their majority report, have already recommended tenure.
Concerned DePaul students rally for gifted professor. Photo courtesy Activist Student Union website.
A recent graduate of DePaul who has been in contact with student groups and was at the hearing supporting Professor Finkelstein, told me about forty students demonstrated in favour of granting tenure at this hearing. They brought signs, wore T-shirts and in a dignified manner supported a brilliant professor of whom many of his critics have never observed in the classroom.
The provost letter, summarising the recommendation of the University Board on Tenure and Promotion, could come as early as this week. A final decision on Professor Finkelstein’s application for tenure and promotion to associate professor must be made prior to June 15. Various news reports quoting DePaul administrators and faculty project a mid-May to early June decision.