Professor in U.S. removed over ‘Speak English’ email

Image for representation purpose only.

Image for representation purpose only.  

Duke University faculty urged students not to speak Chinese

A U.S. university professor has been removed as director of a graduate programme, amid a furore over an email she sent urging students not to speak Chinese, a media report said.

Megan Neely, an assistant professor at the Duke University in North Carolina, told students that not speaking English could lead to “unintended consequences” for international students, the BBC reported.

The email was sent after two unnamed faculty members of the biostatistics Masters programme complained to her about students speaking Chinese in public areas in the department.

The controversy erupted after screenshots of Ms. Neely’s email to biostatistics students went viral online over the weekend.

Duke University confirmed to U.S. media that the screenshots were genuine.

Ms. Neely said that the two faculty members had asked her if she had photos of students on the Masters programme, before picking out a number of first-year students “who they observed speaking Chinese (in their words, very loudly), in the student lounge/study areas”.

Unintended effects

Ms. Neely said that the faculty members told her “they wanted to write down the names so they could remember them if the students ever interviewed for an internship or asked to work with them for a masters project.

“To international students,” she continued, “PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE keep these unintended consequences in mind when you choose to speak in Chinese in the building.”

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Printable version | Apr 2, 2020 6:55:17 AM |

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