Indiana Daily Student

IU graduate student government demands Murray McGibbon stop teaching

IU-Bloomington’s Graduate and Professional Student Government called Wednesday for associate professor Murray McGibbon to be removed from teaching. The Indiana Daily Student published an investigation Monday detailing years of sexual harassment allegations against McGibbon.

McGibbon works in the Department of Theatre, Drama, and Contemporary Dance and teaches 33 students in three acting and directing classes this semester.

“McGibbon’s continued presence in the Department poses an immediate threat to the safety and security to the students he may interact with, and his actions continue to place him at odds with the mission and vision of Indiana University,” GPSG said in a statement.

IU determined more than a year ago that McGibbon sexually harassed then-freshman Josh Hogan during auditions and rehearsals for “The Goat, or Who is Sylvia,” a high-profile play McGibbon directed in 2018. McGibbon “exhibited a pattern of singling out some students and giving them undue attention,” Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs Eliza Pavalko wrote in a September 2019 decision letter following a Title IX investigation into Hogan’s allegations.

Pavalko imposed sanctions on McGibbon but allowed him to continue teaching classes.

In August, graduate student Jamie Anderson accused McGibbon of sexually harassing her and reported him to IU’s Title IX office. Administrators determined Anderson’s complaint did not rise to the level of a violation of IU’s sexual misconduct policy.

GPSG, the university-sponsored student government representing IU’s graduate and professional students, said IU keeping McGibbon on faculty after determining he sexually harassed a student and made others uncomfortable is unacceptable.

“The students in the Department are right to demand a more proper punishment and greater protection from a known harasser,” the statement said.

The graduate student government’s Executive Committee will work with its General Assembly and theater department representative to “recommend further steps that the University should take to provide a safer academic experience for all students,” according to the statement.

The theater department’s Student Advisory Board, which serves as a liaison between students and faculty, said in a statement Tuesday that “the university needs to do everything possible in order to terminate Professor McGibbon’s employment.”

Students are organizing a protest Friday afternoon outside the theater building to demand McGibbon’s removal.

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