U Miami hiring Trump HHS secretary elicits 'horror, disgust and sadness' from professor

A professor criticized the University of Miami for hiring President Trump’s Secretary of Health and Human Services.

'There are a lot of important reasons why Azar should be unemployable by any reputable organization,' the professor co-wrote in a student publication.

A University of Miami professor reacted with “horror, disgust, and sadness” over the school’s hiring of a former Trump cabinet secretary.

In August 2021, the University of Miami tapped former Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar to work as an adjunct professor and senior executive in residence at the Patti and Allan Herbert Business School. 

Dean John Quelch said that Azar’s hiring represented “a tremendous opportunity to our students to learn from top leaders in the health care field.”

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Some university affiliates, however, were not pleased with the decision.

Education professor Scotney Evans and recent graduate Thomas Kennedy — an elected Florida Democratic Party member — wrote an opinion piece in student publication The Miami Hurricane describing their concerns with Azar’s connection to the Trump administration.

“Hearing that the Miami Herbert Business School hired Alex Azar, former President Donald Trump’s Health and Human Services Secretary, we both reacted with a mix of horror, disgust and sadness,” they wrote. “There are a lot of important reasons why Azar should be unemployable by any reputable organization that values common humanity and equal rights for all.” 

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“We believe in free discourse and think our campus benefits from a variety of beliefs and opinions to encourage a healthy and diverse learning environment,” the authors insisted. “But Azar was complicit in some of the most horrific policies enacted during the Trump era. His hire was a huge mistake.”

Evans is not the first professor to try to bar former Trump officials from academia.

Campus Reform reported in November that although Harvard University typically hosts officials from outgoing presidential administrations, students were “extremely concerned” about the Trump administration’s impacts on “fundamental democratic institutions.” 

Harvard students asked their administrators for a “system of accountability” for “high-level political appointees and Trump administration consultants before they are invited as fellows or to teach or speak on campus.”

Campus Reform reached out to Evans for comment; this article will be updated accordingly.

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @BenZeisloft