Janie Benson: Missed opportunity

January 25, 2014 

As the mother of a son who was taught by Mary Willingham at the Hill Center in 2002-03, I can attest to her unwavering commitment to her students. She imparted new language skills and enthusiasm for learning that have benefited my now-adult son to this day.

As a UNC-CH alumna, adjunct faculty member and former member of the UNC Institutional Review Board for the Schools of Public Health and Nursing, I question why Willingham was not invited to present her research at the recent Faculty Council meeting. The opportunity for researchers to explain and defend their methodology and findings before their peers is at the core of academic standards.

Furthermore, a mark of leadership is the respect with which organizations, including and especially universities, treat their employees, even when they disagree. UNC has fallen short on both counts.

Janie Benson

Chapel Hill

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