CHAPEL HILL – A high-ranking educator at UNC has come out in support of academic advisor Mary Willingham’s claims that the University has admitted student athletes who were not ready for Carolina.
Former interim dean of UNC’s College of Arts and Sciences and current Kenan Professor Emerita of Slavic Literatures, Madeline Levine wrote a letter to Chancellor Carol Folt and Provost Jim Dean expressing her disappointment in the attack of the information shared by Willingham.
The News and Observer intercepted the letter and broke the story Thursday evening.
Levine accused UNC of not trying to fix the fraudulent academic issues that have been plaguing the university for some time now. She also said that Provost Dean poorly handled the public announcement of the university’s stance with Willingham when he criticized her findings at a Faculty Council meeting.
Chancellor Folt reportedly responded to Levine’s letter saying she appreciated the input and that she passed the information along to Provost Dean and Athletic Director Bubba Cunningham. She went on to say that the university “accept(s) accountability for the past and (is) continuing to learn as a community from those painful lessons”—a sentiment shared recently by the university on multiple occasions.
Levine also reportedly met with the provost of UNC at the time, Bernadette Gray-Little in an attempt to express her concern for the lack of college readiness among student athletes. She said she was told that it was known that the decision had been made to grant special admission to a student and there was nothing to be done about it by then.” She went on to say that “I still feel guilty that I let the matter drop and did not publicly express my dismay.”
A spokesman for Gray-Little told the N&O she does not remember that conversation with Levine.
Friday morning, Mary Willingham and history professor Jay Smith will join Ron Stutts and News Director Ran Northam for a live interview in the WCHL studios at 7:00 a.m. to discuss the ongoing conversation of the claims of illiteracy at UNC.