WXXI AM News

Alumni want more information on resignation of Hobart and William Smith president

Apr 18, 2018

Credit 2.hws.edu

A group of alumni of Hobart and William Smith Colleges wants more transparency from the school surrounding the recent resignation by President Gregory Vincent, amid allegations of plagiarism.

Retired CIA officer John Sipher graduated with Vincent in 1983.

He says it's his belief the school brought in Vincent to help move the colleges to the next level.

But an anonymous email alleging Vincent did not properly cite parts of the doctoral dissertation he earned from the University of Pennsylvania changed all that.

"Within just a couple of weeks Greg was pushed out of a job.  And it's not clear to a lot of us that the voices on Greg's behalf, in support of Greg's, were heard as part of the process," he said. "I'm sure if you're an agent of change and you're a threat to some people, this gave ammunition to those people who were uncomfortable with that."

Dr. Gregory Vincent resigned last week.

Sipher and other alumni have written the school's board, telling them it's important the colleges reveal who sent the email and what their agenda is.

He says he'd like HWS to consider reinstating him but they need more information surrounding his resignation to determine if that's the right decision.

University of Pennsylvania spokesperson Kat Stein issued a statement:

"We take academic integrity very seriously. Penn’s Graduate School of Education is currently following standard University of Pennsylvania procedures, including a thorough investigation, to assess Gregory Vincent’s dissertation. We have not yet concluded our work. "

Spokesperson for the Colleges, Cathy Williams, provided WXXI with this statement:

"Hobart and William Smith have received both letters of support and concern regarding Dr. Vincent’s resignation. The Colleges have accepted Dr. Vincent’s resignation, have appointed an interim president, and are looking to the future with gratitude for Dr. Vincent’s invaluable service."