Grad student settles lawsuit over alleged racist caricature: report

Grad student settles lawsuit over alleged racist caricature: report

Utah State University grad student Greg Noel this weekend settled his federal lawsuit against the school for $45,000 over a racist caricature that was allegedly drawn on a class board, Tulsa's News Channel 8 reported on Sunday.

"Noel alleged that his professor, the director of the Marriage and Family Therapy Program, drew a racist caricature of him and, accused the school of conducting an unjust investigation that cleared the director of any wrongdoing," News Channel 8 explained.

"According to the lawsuit," the Oklahoma outlet continued, "the incident occurred when Noel was two months away from graduating from the program. After experiencing technical issues with a lab computer, he had an outburst, and the program director gave him an ultimatum to seek therapy for his anger issues or risk not completing the program."

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Noel's "allegations included the program director making comments about Noel's Haitian background and suggesting he could become violent in a therapy session," the filing states. "Later, during a class watching a pre-recorded training, the director allegedly drew a racist caricature of Noel, which was inadvertently projected onto the class board from the director's laptop."

News Channel 8 noted that although the instructor was investigated and reprimanded, the disciplinary action was "later withdrawn from the director's personnel file after a review by the Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee."

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News Channel 8's story is available here.

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