University of Arkansas chancellor resigns after questionable photos surfaced on social media
the resignation comes just days after KNWA asked UA to explain an online account containing provocative photos, appearing to show the chancellor
FAYETTEVILLE, Arche. (KNWA / KFTA) – University of Arkansas Chancellor Joe Steinmetz has resigned.
In one email to students On Thursday, Steinmetz said his resignation would be effective Friday, June 18. He didn’t give a reason.
“I still strongly believe in the mission of higher education, but given the many challenges I have encountered in trying to run a university in today’s polarized society, I must do what is best for my family and I feel ready to make room for others, ”he wrote. .
Steinmetz’s resignation comes just hours after a special meeting held by the AU Board of Directors, where members entered into an executive session, which is usually done when discussing personnel matters. Immediately after the meeting, board members told reporters that there was “no action taken.”
“In my annual graduation speech, I sometimes tell graduates that the key to a meaningful and fulfilling life is finding a career that creates deeply meaningful work and not settling for less,” Steinmetz said. “For 38 years, higher education has not only been my vocation, but my absolute commitment. My wife Sandy is the reason I wake up in the morning, but the promise of teaching and learning, research and discovery, awareness and engagement has kept me returning to the office day after day, year. year after year – true to my belief in the power of higher education to improve lives.
Steinmetz took over as chancellor of the Fayetteville campus on January 1, 2016, from Ohio State University, where he was the school’s academic director. He also worked at the University of Kansas and Indiana University.
Nationally recognized behavioral neuroscientist, Steinmetz received degrees from Central Michigan University and a PhD from Ohio University.
Neither the university nor Steinmetz have cited the reason for the resignation, which comes just days after KNWA asked the university to explain an online account containing provocative photos, appearing to show the university chancellor of Arkansas.
AU spokesman Mark Rushing denied the photos were of Chancellor Steinmetz.
During a phone call with KNWA, Rushing called it an “obvious attack” and “hoax.” He cited other “deep fakes” as examples of extreme efforts by some people to embarrass others on social media.
Rushing added, “It has never been easier to make highly compelling fake photos and videos, so much so that Photoshop can be used to add or remove even the smallest details.”
Rushing claims the university contacted Twitter about the account, which appears to have been created in July 2017, and disappeared around 20 minutes after KNWA first contacted the chancellor’s office.
KNWA tried to contact Chancellor Steinmetz on Thursday without success.
Stay with KNWA & FOX24 for more updates on this developing story.