Three psychology professors at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, are facing charges of sexual misconduct by a group of female students who allege the men made inappropriate advances toward them, publicly groped them, and even coerced them into engaging in sexual relations, according to a lawsuit filed against the college.
The New Hampshire Attorney General’s Office is also conducting a criminal investigation into the alleged sexual misconduct by professors Todd Heatherton, Paul Whalen and Bill Kelley. The men were put on paid leave and had their access to campus restricted by the college during the investigation.
The complaint describes a “21st-century Animal House” culture of parties with drugs and alcohol, and unwelcome advances toward women. The students said they felt their professors had tremendous influence over their academic careers, delaying exams or threatening research and funding to those who turned them down.
Previous complaints of sexual harassment were made against some of the professors at the Ivy League college, including three against Heatherton beginning in 2002, and one against Kelley in 2005. But the college never took action until April 2017, when the group of psychology students reported incidents.
School administrators told several of the graduate students that it was in their best interest to keep the men as their advisors even after they had reported them.
“There is … a lack of acknowledgment about how badly things were handled and how problematic the culture was,” said Vassiki Chauhan, a doctoral student and one of the women who made claims of sexual harassment. “All people want to do now is move on and pretend that Dartmouth is a land of peace and joy.”
Source: Boston Globe