COLUMBIA, S.C. — A group of University of South Carolina students, faculty and concerned community members gathered outside of the trustees meeting and were outraged after the final decision on the new president was made.
Trustees voted 11-8 in favor of Robert Caslen, with one trustee voting present.
Lauren Workman, a UofSC student said, “This is a disgrace to our university and a disgrace to all the constituencies that are out here today fighting for what’s right. It is a disgrace that the board of trustees would refuse to every constituent that came out here today.”
Deanna Smith was emotional after the final decision tearing up and saying, “Accreditation is a lot of real fear for a lot of us. I know some of the board members might not take it as seriously but its not their degrees on the line. I don’t want to spend years working on something that will just be meaningless. I don’t want that to tarnish my resume. I’m not going to go down on a sinking ship.”
“My son is a graduate, my other son went here, I did a lot of graduate work here as a teacher and I’m a big fan- I may not even attend the basketball games this year," Jeannie Breeden said, "I was just about to order my women’s basketball tickets and I’m going to have to think long and hard before I spend another dime here.”
Of the people who showed up today, only one man, Ray Moore, was very outspoken of his support for Robert Caslen and Gov. McMaster.
“They have a duty to get the best person and that’s what they did. So the talking about the process is another phony issue," Moore says also listing the accreditation talk as a phony issue, "They got the best person they could have gotten and apparently he was favored all along by the board and that came out during the meeting. So when they talk about the process its just their way of saying ‘hey we don’t want him.’”