The Yale University dean who was placed on leave last month after writing Yelp reviews that called people “white trash” and “low class folks” has resigned.
A university official announced Tuesday that June Chu, who served as dean of the university’s Pierson residential college, had stepped down from the post.
“I write to let you know Dean Chu has left her position at Pierson College and wishes the best to the students,” Pierson Head Stephen Davis said in an email to members of the college on Tuesday. He said he would be reaching out to students as he begins the search for a replacement.
The Yale Daily News first reported on Chu’s controversial Yelp reviews of local businesses in May. “To put it quite simply: if you are white trash, this is the perfect night out for you!” Chu wrote in one review of a Japanese restaurant, according to screenshots published by the student newspaper. “This establishment is definitely not authentic by an stretch of any imagination and perfect for those low class folks who believe this is a real night out.” In another review for a movie theater, she criticized employees as “barely educated morons trying to manage snack orders for the obese.”
Chu did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Wednesday. In an email to the residential college community last month, she apologized for the reviews on her personal account, which has since been deleted.
“I have learned a lot this semester about the power of words and about the accountability that we owe one another,” Chu wrote, according to the Daily News. “My remarks were wrong. There are no two ways about it. Not only were they insensitive in matters related to class and race; they demean the values to which I hold myself and which I offer as a member of this community.”
Students at Yale have called on administrators to improve diversity and inclusivity at the university in recent years. In a high-profile incident in 2015, the head of another residential college resigned under pressure after sending an email to students about cultural appropriation and offensive Halloween costumes.
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