Widow of Medgar Evers calls Brooklyn college named for him an ‘embarrassment’
The widow of slain civil rights icon Medgar Evers says the Brooklyn college named in his honor has become a national “embarrassment” in need of new leadership.
Myrlie Evers blasted the City University of New York trustees for allowing Rudy Crew to stay on as Medgar Evers College president after he was set to leave for a job in Georgia that fell through.
“We, the family, strongly resent a decision that will continue to send the college in a downward spiral through expedience, complacency, silence, ‘benign neglect,’ or friendship,” Evers wrote in a letter to the CUNY board, the majority of whose members are appointed by Gov. Cuomo.
“In doing so, the University appears to be complicit in exacerbating a deteriorating situation in an Institution that carries our family name.”
Evers, 87, said she had also brought her complaints to Cuomo.
Crew, a former New York City schools chancellor, was the publicly-announced front runner in April to head the DeKalb County school district outside Atlanta. The DeKalb school board reversed course and decided in May not to hire him. Some local parents protested Crew’s selection with one saying, “He’s all style, no substance,” the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported.
The job instead went to Cheryl Watson-Harris, who had been NYC School Chancellor Richard Carranza’s first deputy.
Crew, 69, said he would retire in June 2021 from Medgar Evers, which he has headed since 2013. The four-year Crown Heights college enrolled 5,798 students last fall, a 14 percent drop from 2015. The one-year retention rate for freshmen who started in 2018 was 65 percent, way below the university-wide rate of 80 percent.
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