UNC to phase out undergrads as tutors for athletes
Posted September 21, 2011
Chapel Hill, N.C. — The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill plans to stop having undergraduate students tutor its athletes, officials said Wednesday.
The move comes after a former tutor was accused of giving improper help to football players. UNC said it uncovered academic misconduct by Jennifer Wiley and the players last year during an NCAA investigation into players' relationships with sports agents.
The NCAA cited Wiley in the Notice of Allegations it filed against the Tar Heel football program in June.
Senior Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education Bobbi Owen told the UNC Board of Trustees that the university had 74 tutors who work with athletes. Only four are undergraduates, while 61 are graduate students and nine are public school teachers.
Owen said the university hopes to cut the number of tutors and have each work longer hours so it's easier to track personal relationships. She said UNC also would like to recruit more school teachers and retired faculty as tutors.
The four undergraduates who are still tutoring aren't at risk of losing their jobs because they have done nothing wrong, Owen said. Instead, the university will phase out hiring undergraduates and use them only in "exceptional situations," she said.
UNC officials also told the board that they are reviewing how independent study classes are conducted to ensure academic standards are maintained.
Julius Nyang'oro resigned this month as chairman of the Department of African and Afro-American Studies after a former football player was found to have plagiarized a paper in an independent study class.
UNC has been in defensive mode for more than a year because of the NCAA investigation.
The ultimate fallout from that probe is still to come. University leaders, including Chancellor Holden Thorpe, will travel to Indianapolis Oct. 28 for a meeting with the NCAA Committee on Infractions, which will decide how to penalize the university and the team.
UNC has offered to vacate all of its football wins from 2008 and 2009 and cut the number of football scholarships offered by nine over the course of three years.