By Catlyn Keeve
Stephens University President Jayre McClellan resigned on Saturday while holding firm to his leadership philosophy: “Money. Power. Respect.”
Offended by both student and faculty criticism of racial tensions on campus, McClellan attacked Parker Westin, a current senior at Stephens University and student rights organization leader, at Saturday‘s news conference. Westin said the mission of his organization, Concerned Student’s 1738, is to “combat racism on campus,” and he is proud to have had the “power to force McClellan’s resignation.”
When asked about his plans for the future, McClellan said, “My plan now is to keep breathing, and to move forward in education.”
McClellan seemed calm, until freshman Cortez Jackson explained that he felt “violated” by the “insensitivity” of the university president. Through continuous pained expressions and murmurings to Public Relations representative Booker T. Crenshaw, McClellan’s uncomfortable behavior was on full display. “The only color President McClellan cares about is green.” says Jackson.
As McClellan looked on in disdain at the various voices saying that his resignation day was “the happiest day” of their lives, protestors also chanted for justice to be served. The faces of Westin, Jackson, and football coach Jym Johnson contorted in confusion, when McClellan contradicts himself with statements such as, “ This school is a business,” in contrast to, “ This school is my life.”
After a concluding farewell by Booker T. Crenshaw, Stephens University Communications Director, President McClellan stormed off, out of breath from the quarrel, with a lasting, “I ain’t done.” to the audience.
Stephens University faculty and students agree that the next president should be, “more receptive” to campus tensions, and to have characteristics other than the “tone deaf” and “insensitive” traits attributed to McClellan.
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