Cheerleader who used racial slur on social media will not attend University of Tennessee
Take a virtual tour of the University of Tennessee campus during the coronavirus pandemic in April 2020. Knoxville News Sentinel
The incoming cheerleader at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, who used a racial slur on social media has been removed from the team and will not be attending UT in the fall, the university announced Thursday.
A Twitter thread showing the student using a racial slur twice began drawing attention on Wednesday. The tweets asked people to reach out to the university and express their concerns.
Screenshots and recordings of the posts attracted attention on Twitter, with a video recording of the student using the slur being viewed over 30,000 times Wednesday. The university said Wednesday evening it was investigating the posts.
"The university takes seriously our commitment to fostering a Volunteer community that values equity, inclusion, and that promotes respect for all people. We have a responsibility to support our black students and create a place where all Vols feel safe," the university said in a statement.
"On Wednesday, following a racist video and photo surfacing on social media, Athletics made the decision not to allow a prospective student to join the Spirit Program. She will not be attending the university this fall," the statement continued.
The incident was reviewed through the university's bias reporting process, which addressed incidents "as they come up with the individuals involved," the statement said.
Students at Tennessee basketball game protest UT's blackface response Wochit
Several similar incidents occurred around the country recently. A student at Marquette University, a private university in Milwaukee, had their admission rescinded earlier this week after screenshots of a Snapchat she posted about the death of George Floyd drew outrage on social media.
At Missouri State University, two incoming students withdrew from the university after a similar Twitter thread surfaced, showing the students using a racial slur.
Previous incident at UT
In 2019, a group of UT Knoxville students were condemned for wearing blackface and posting photos on social media.
Two students in the photo wore charcoal skin care masks, with a caption about getting "this free college now that I'm black."
The university responded, saying "the image is repulsive and the message abhorrent." However, the university did not expel the students. Later, one of the students voluntarily withdrew from UT.
The university also implemented bias recognition training for students, faculty, staff and administrators.
Former cheer coach was investigated
Last year, former cheer coach Joy Postell-Gee retired, ending a 13-month investigation into allegations that she made "racially and ethnically insensitive remarks."
The now-retired UT Spirit team coordinator Joy Postell-Gee told investigators she discovered $2,047 of the team's money at her 真人百家家乐官网网站home. Wochit
Postell-Gee had been the cheer coach for over 25 years, and was on paid administrative leave from June 2018 to July 2019 while the investigation was ongoing. She had also been placed on paid leave earlier in 2018 because of similar complaints.
The investigation looked into complaints from two undergraduate students who said Postell-Gee "discriminated against them on the basis of 1) sexual orientation, and 2) race," according to a memo written by Jennifer Richter, the former associate vice chancellor of the Office of Equity and Diversity, who conducted the investigation.
The investigation also found that Postell-Gee had poorly managed the cheer program and its finances.