In 2013, plans for the first round of Cap-U-cuts included slicing off computing science, interactive design, textile and studio arts, and numerous other programs and courses. In response, instructor George Rammell exercised his artistic might and sculpted a giant caricature of the university's president, Kris Bulcroft, and her pooch, Margaux.
Somewhere along the line, the sculpture was seized by Administration and, in keeping with the theme of cuts, was hacked into pieces and removed from the campus of Capilano University in North Vancouver.
Administration, under the direction of former board chair Jane Shackell, justified the removal by asserting that the presence of the piece on campus constituted harassment and bullying.
In May 2014, Jim Turk, then executive director of the Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT), called for an investigation to determine whether George's rights to academic freedom were violated and whether George had bullied and harassed the president with his larger-than-life caricature.*
CAUT's ad hoc committee members conducted numerous interviews and reviewed several documents as well as media publications and broadcasts before finding in George Rammell's favour.
Nine recommendations, including an apology from the university administrators to their former instructor, were listed in the final report and summarized in the June 2015 issue of the CAUT Bulletin. Click this link to read the report, which was written by Jason Brown (Thompson Rivers University) and Terri Van Steinburg (Kwantlen Polytechnic University).
The committee will meet again in August to assess how Admin has responded to its recommendations and to decide if sanctions are necessary.
Note:*The original sculpture, Blathering on in Krisendom, was injured beyond repair and a second edition entitled Margaux and the Monarch, incorporating a few of the original appendages, was created and displayed off-campus.