University Expedites Process to Consider Name Change

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September 25, 2018

Based on the request made on Saturday, September 22 by Dr. Ed Meek to remove his name from the University of Mississippi’s School of Journalism and New Media, University officials are accelerating our standard process for considering a change to the name of an academic program.

On Monday, the faculty of the School of Journalism and New Media voted to accept Dr. Meek’s request, and the dean of the school, Will Norton, asked for expedited consideration of this matter by the councils on campus that must review it. As a result, members of the Undergraduate and Graduate Councils are now voting by email on whether to accept the request to remove the Meek name from the school. These councils are comprised of faculty from across the entire university, and each council has one voting student representative.

If approved by both councils, the request will be considered by the Council of Academic Administrators, which is chaired by the provost. Its voting members include all deans, the Faculty Senate chair, faculty representatives, the three vice chancellors within Academic Affairs, the Associated Student Body president, and the Graduate Student Council president. If approved, the Council of Academic Administrators refers the matter to me as chancellor, and I will refer the request to the IHL Board for consideration on an expedited basis.

There have been comments from members of the public and the media recommending that the university return the naming gift. State and federal law and the terms of the original agreement governing the management of these funds prohibit the University from making such a move unilaterally. Discussions are underway with the Meek family on the most appropriate way to proceed.

We will continue to work to bring this matter to an appropriate resolution.

Jeffrey S. Vitter

Chancellor

UPDATES:

Click to read the most recent update on the process on School of Journalism name change on Tuesday, Oct. 9.

Read the message sent from UM leadership about posts made by a UM donor on Thursday, Sept. 20.

Click here to read a letter sent to the UM community from Chancellor Jeffrey S. Vitter on Friday, Sept. 21.

Read a response to a statement issued by Ed Meek on Saturday, Sept. 22.