George Washington University is rescinding Bill Cosby’s honorary doctorate amid allegations of sexual assault against the embattled comedian, its president said Monday.
The Washington, D.C. college cited the “renewed distress” the ongoing saga has had on alumni and students who are survivors of sexual assault in its decision to pull the degree. “That makes this case different,” President Steven Knapp said in a statement. “I have therefore decided that the university will rescind Mr. Cosby’s honorary degree.”
Cosby, 78, was charged in Pennsylvania last month with aggravated indecent assault for allegedly drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Costand in 2004. Costand is one of more than 50 women who have come forward to accuse the comedian of assault over several decades.
More than a dozen universities, TV networks and other institutions have already cut ties with the comedian, including Spelman College, New York University and TV Land. President Obama also plans to “take a look” at revoking Cosby’s Presidential Medal of Freedom if Congress allows him to, White House press secretary Josh Earnest said late last week.