OXFORD • Three campus organizations at the University of Mississippi on Friday released statements condemning actions by the state Institutions of Higher Learning relating to he search process that led to the hiring of Glenn Boyce as the next chancellor of Ole Miss.
Members of the Associated Student Body denounced IHL's lack of transparency with students, but said they are eager to develop a positive relationship with Boyce.
“Specifically, we denounce: The IHL’s lack of transparency and communication with campus constituencies, particularly students, throughout the search process,” the statement reads. “The IHL’s exclusion and removal of students from the search process and the subsequent announcement; and, the IHL’s lack of accountability, in its general government practices, to members of our university communities in the state of Mississippi.”
The statement, which was signed by the five executive officers of the student government organization, went on to say the actions taken by IHL contradict the values the university outlines in the UM Creed.
The Creed is a list of beliefs the university tries to adhere to in the daily governance of the university. Many of the beliefs include fairness, civility, personal integrity and academic honesty.
“We are eager to develop a productive relationship with Dr. Boyce,” the statement reads. “We remain hopeful that he will follow through with his commitment to a student-centered approach.”
University of Mississippi and IHL officials could not immediately be reached for comment for this story.
The ASB statement comes just days before Boyce is expected to be installed as the chancellor of the state’s historic flagship university. IHL officials announced Boyce would become the next chancellor of the university through a press release on Oct. 4. The press release was sent out after the official press conference announcing Boyce’s hire was cancelled over safety concerns from protesters disrupting the announcement.
The Abolish IHL Coalition, an organization comprised of university student and faculty members, also released a statement condemning the IHL’s actions and went further to demand that Boyce and members of the state college board resign over Boyce’s appointment.
“Because we care about the future of the university, we are standing up for it,” the statement reads. “Doing so means securing an ethically, professionally, and democratically vetted Chancellor. Because of the IHL’s own actions throughout the search process, Dr. Glenn Boyce can never be that chancellor.”
The statement went on to demand that Boyce and current members of the IHL board resign, the chancellor search be reopened, a committee of university constituents conduct a transparent and democratic search and that the Mississippi State Legislature abolish IHL.
The Black Student Union at the university also released a statement saying they have "no confidence in the Mississippi Board of Trustees of the State Institutions of Higher Learning."
They also demanded a timeline of Boyce's hiring, asked for the IHL be abolished and advocated for the creation of autonomous boards to govern each public university in the state.
"Because of IHL's dereliction of duty in its selection of Dry Glenn Boyce, Dr. Boyce has inadvertently caused detrimental harm to the University of Mississippi and the UM Community," the statement read.
Multiple officials familiar with the search process have told the Daily Journal that Boyce never formally applied to be the next chancellor and was interviewed through a “back door” process, which was a confidential way for candidates to apply for the position.
Early on in the chancellor’s search, Boyce was hired as a consultant for IHL to meet with university constituents to map out what type of candidate people were looking for in the next chancellor.
The student government organization is set to vote release the resolution to condemn the IHL at a later date.