I was delighted to see that our administration has decided to vigorously enforce policy on the campus. Given that they have now become sticklers for following appropriate procedures, I thought I would advise Human Resources of the mendacious resumes and hiring policy failures surrounding the employment of Cheri Sidney and Tyra Austin. Accordingly, this morning, I sent the following e-mail to Renee Mitchell with a CC to our erstwhile interim Provost:
Given the university administration’s newly discovered desire to ensure that university and board policies are followed to the letter, I have information about procedural violations in hiring and falsified resumes that I am sure you will want to know about and correct.
In 2009, the president’s close friend Cheri Sidney applied for a position as Associate Director of Human Resources. She indicated on her resume that she had earned a master’s degree from DePaul in HR Management. However, Ms. Sidney had no master’s degree at the time. She did not receive a master’s degree from DePaul until 2013, and it was in Applied Professional Studies. Thus, the information on her resume is simply a lie. In addition, this same untruthful information appears on official university documents; as the hiring form for Ms. Sidney, dated October 7, 2009, indicates her level of education to be a “Master’s of Art.”
In August 2012, Tyra Austin applied for a position as the Assistant Director of Financial Aid. The job announcement clearly indicated that a Bachelor’s degree was required for the position, with “a Master’s in Business, Accounting, Public Administration or Student Personnel or related field . . . preferred.” Ms. Austin is apparently clairvoyant as her application indicates that she possessed a B.S. degree in Political Science from Howard University with a graduation date of May 2013. Thus, Ms. Austin failed to meet the minimum job requirements at the time of her application and subsequent hiring on August 16, 2012. To this date, she has still not earned any kind of baccalaureate degree, so she continues to be employed without the requisite minimum educational requirements for her position. As an aside, Howard does not award a B.S. in Political Science, the degree is a B.A.
Apparently, Human Resources either failed to check or ignored the obvious lies about the educational credentials of these two applicants; a clear violation of its own policy. As for the consequences of falsifying application materials, the “Certification of Truthfulness” on the Chicago State application is quite specific on that matter. I am sure you will want to get to the bottom of these two questionable hirings. I am in possession of all documents relevant to my claims in this e-mail. Should you wish to see those documents, I will be happy to forward them. Alternatively, you could also check your own records as virtually all the material substantiating my claims came from university records. Thank you for your service and for your attention to this matter.
Robert, E. Bionaz, Ph.D.
As I said in my e-mail, I'm sure the administration will want to get to the bottom of this issue as expeditiously as it wants the senate controversy resolved.