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New York Times: Anatomy of a Campus Coup

Author: Andrew Rice
September 11, 2012


Budgetary constraints in a tight economy have forced reform and fomented conflict at the University of Virginia.

On a languorous Sunday in June, low season on the campus of the University of Virginia, Prof. Larry Sabato opened a perplexing e-mail. "My instant reaction," he said, "was that I thought we'd been hacked." The message, sent to the entire university, announced the resignation of the university's president, Teresa Sullivan, obliquely citing a "philosophical difference of opinion" with the institution's governing board. Sullivan had held the job for just two years, without any scandal, and Sabato couldn't believe she had been pushed aside with so little evident justification. "I said that if this was true," he recalled, "this was going to be a P.R. disaster of national proportions."

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