This is a sad moment for our university. This morning's Tribune article further exposes the depth of administrative corruption here at Chicago State. The university's administration is unable to substantively respond to the plagiarism charges against Angela Henderson and once again attacks the persons bringing the message. For certain persons employed at this school no infamous deed is sufficient to subject them to any risk of termination. Lying on your resume or application? No problem as long as you are a friend of Wayne Watson. Plagiarizing your dissertation while you occupy a top management position and will later become the top academic official at the school? No problem as long as you are a friend of Wayne Watson. Performing your duties at a dazzling level of incompetence? No problem as long as you are a friend of Wayne Watson.
In the next few days and weeks, administrative mouthpieces will either try to ignore this scandal or they will spin the story as much as they can. I expect the usual round of personal attacks, coming anonymously or through surrogates. I expect an angry response from the supporters of Wayne Watson who have so much invested in his continuing presidency at Chicago State. Unfortunately, these reactions will do nothing more than diminish the reputation of the school.
No amount of feigned righteous indignation on the part of the Chicago State administration and/or the acolytes of Wayne Watson can alter the simple fact that Angela Henderson plagiarized her dissertation. What she produced violated the academic integrity standards of both the University of Illinois Chicago's College of Nursing and the citation standards of the American Psychological Association. If anyone wishes to debate this point, I would be happy to speak with them. If anyone would like to offer an affirmative defense of her actions, I would be happy to hear it.
In my estimation, this current public embarrassment is a predictable result of hiring, retaining and even promoting people who lie and cheat to gain positions for which they are demonstrably unqualified. The presence in the administration of Angela Henderson demonstrates the contempt with which Wayne Watson views the entire academic enterprise. I wonder how you, my colleagues, will react to this. Will you put your heads down and try to closet yourself in your offices believing that you can weather the storm? Will you acquiesce again to the outrageous behavior of our top administrators? Will you temporize and rationalize behavior that would earn students in your classes an "F" while at the same time it is tolerated from the university's Provost? Is this what we stand for? If so, does this university even exist as a viable institution? I await your answer.