UPDATE: Concordia Begins Investigation Into Alleged Racist Conduct by a JMSB Professor
Allegations Surface on Facebook, University Professor Has Been Temporarily Replaced
Another instructor has replaced professor Roumen Solov on a temporary basis as the investigation into his conduct last Wednesday continues, according to Concordia University spokesperson Chris Mota.
“We’re taking all of the necessary steps to address this situation and have already met with some of the students, as well as with professor Solov,” she wrote in an email.
The original story follows.
Concordia has started an investigation into an accusation made on the “CASA-JMSB” Facebook group about alleged racist conduct by a professor from the university’s John Molson School of Business.
Professor Roumen Solov allegedly made derogatory remarks towards Black people in his class last Wednesday. According to his bio on Concordia’s website, he has been teaching marketing and management at Concordia for 17 years.
The interim Dean of JMSB, Stéphane Brutus, and the Concordia human relations department have been in contact with Solov and are handling the situation, according to Cléa Desjardins, a university spokesperson.
Whether or not Solov will teach for the remainder of the semester has yet to be decided, Desjardins added. “They’re really taking these allegations seriously and it’s evolving as we speak,” she said.
In an email, Solov wrote, “I strongly dispute this version of events and contest the facts as reported. However, based on instructions from the faculty and recommendations from my union I will not issue any further comments in the public domain based on social media false allegations.”
On Friday, Russell Javaheri posted on the Facebook group “CASA-JMSB,” detailing comments Solov made in his Wednesday evening IBUS 492 course called cross-cultural communication and management. According to Javaheri, who said he was in the class, Solov had an argument with a student about course work, telling that student to “shut up, you are an ignorant and don’t ask me questions just do whatever I say.”
Later in the class, according to Javaheri’s account, the professor said, “After World War II Jewish people immigrated to New York City and they got high education, but Black people yet are not educated.” To prove his point, Javaheri continued, Solov asked how many Black students were in his class and pointed out that only one Black student was there.
Solov had not attended a class until last Wednesday and missed seven weeks of school, Jahaveri wrote in the post.
The post has over 370 likes and 100 comments so far. The group is a public forum created and monitored by the Commerce and Administration Student Association, which is known as CASA-JMSB.
Evan Pitchie, the CASA-JMSB President, said he has been in contact with the interim JMSB Dean Brutus and the department chair about the allegations. Pitchie is in professor Solov’s other course MARK 465, which is called international marketing management.
He said Solov wasn’t supposed to teach this year and replaced a professor who got injured before the semester’s start. Pitchie declined to comment on Solov’s teaching methods.
Solov is also a member of the Concordia University Part-Time Faculty Association. David Douglas, the CUPFA President, said he’s aware of the reports but couldn’t comment on how the union will handle the situation due to confidentiality.
Today, students have set up a petition on change.org asking the university to replace Solov for the rest of the semester. So far it has 23 signatures from a goal of 100.