The University of Wisconsin professor who compared Gov. Scott Walker to Hitler also appears to be seeking out incoming freshman and encouraging them not to attend the university.
Sara Goldrick-Rab is a tenured professor of educational policy studies and sociology at UW-Madison who has been engaged in the debate over the past few months in Wisconsin regarding faculty tenure at public universities.
Goldrick-Rab searched for prospective UW students on Twitter. She found a photo posted on May 31 of six students posing at a high school graduation ceremony and making the Wisconsin “W” with their hands. The tweet’s caption reads, “On (to) Wisconsin! @UWMadison #FutureBadgers.”
She tweeted at the students, "I hate to bring bad news but..." and included a link to an opinion piece discussing the “ill-advised public policy initiatives” threatening shared governance and tenure at the university.
@nstanley8 @mike_mleczko34 @kryptin8 @rpcastle66 @amy_walkowski @grace_ziegler I hate to bring bad news but http://t.co/qnQPwCIaFl— Sara Goldrick-Rab (@saragoldrickrab) June 7, 2015
One of the students replied, “No one cares Sara.”
To which she tweeted back, “Oh good. I thought you wanted a degree of value. Too bad.”
Goldrick-Rab further engaged with the students on Twitter, telling them not to waste their money, and saying that all tenured professors at UW will leave the school if Walker’s state budget goes through.
Walker signed a budget last week that included substantial cuts and changes to state law concerning faculty tenure.
Goldrick-Rab’s conversation with students occurred on June 6, and only came to light after The College Fix reported on her more recent tweets calling Walker a fascist and claiming that he has many psychological similarities to Adolf Hitler.
Goldrick-Rab is still currently employed by the University of Wisconsin. UW's faculty governing group released a statement on Thursday about the controversy.
“We are deeply dismayed with the actions Professor Sara Goldrick-Rab has taken toward students and faculty on Twitter in recent weeks to discourage them from coming here,” the statement reads. “While claiming to stand for academic freedom, she has in fact damaged that principle and our institution with inaccurate statements and misrepresentations.”
When asked to explain her tweets to the incoming students, Goldrick-Rab told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel that she was simply trying to inform them about the issue, not discourage them from attending the university.
"I was very frustrated with the university not being forthcoming,” she said. “Nobody's communicating with them. So I looked for prospective students on Twitter and sent them information.... They need to know what's going on.... I'm not trying to say to them: 'Don't come here.'"