HomeAsian AmericansCincinnati professor on leave over using "Chinese virus"

Cincinnati professor on leave over using “Chinese virus”

Photo by Steinsky via Flickr Creative Commons

A professor at the University of Cincinnati has been put on leave after his use of “Chinese virus” came to light, according to Inside Higher Ed.

A screenshot of an email communication posted on Twitter identifies the professor as John Ucker, an adjunct instructor of mechanical and materials engineering.

The post, which garnered over 166,000 likes, shows that engineering student Evan Solzing reached out to Ucker about being unable to attend an in-person lab due to a coronavirus concern.

The email shows the professor referred the novel coronavirus as “chinese virus” in response.

According to Fox, the university announced a day later that the professor was placed on administrative leave with pay while the university conducts an investigation.

Its statement also assured that the professor should adhere to the university policy that instructors forgo one of the lab tests without recording the grade.

University of Cincinnati President Neville Pinto also took to Twitter to release a similar statement.

“There is no place for bigotry in our community or any other,” Pinto wrote. “We are better than this. Every Bearcat deserves to feel welcomed, respected and supported. Greatness starts with inclusion. And inclusion starts with each of us.”

Similarly, University of Cincinnati Engineering and Applied Science Dean John Weidner called the comment “insensitive” and that there was “no need for it.”

On whether the university should permanently remove Ucker from campus, Weidner was more ambivalent. He told Local 12 that the administrative investigation will evaluate the comment based on “his intent and his context.”

Speaking to Local 12, Solzing said he was shocked that a person in power such as a professor would say a xenophobic comment.

Ucker should apologize, Solzing said.

“I really just want him to apologize,” he said. “I want a sincere apology for his comment.”

 AsAmNews has Asian America in its heart. We’re an all-volunteer effort of dedicated staff and interns. Check out our new Instagram account. Go to our Twitter feed and Facebook page for more content. Please consider interning, joining our staff, or submitting a story.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Worth the Time

Must Read

Regular Features


Discover more from AsAmNews

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading