A Canadian university instructor has been fired after allegedly demanding sex, lobster, and moose meat from a student who expressed concerns about her grades.
A spokesperson for Cape Breton University confirmed the termination this week in a statement to the Chronicle Herald: "Cape Breton University is committed to a safe and respectful campus for all of our community members," Lenore Parsley wrote in an email. "Any and all complaints follow a formal process, as indicated in our respectful campus policy. We won’t be commenting further."
The identities of the student and instructor have not been confirmed.
According to the Chronicle Herald, the student reported the alleged misconduct in early February, shortly after it had occurred. She told the outlet she had approached the instructor for course help because she had struggled with several quizzes. During an extra-help session, the man allegedly told the student they could be "friends with benefits," and began asking a series of inappropriate questions, like how many sexual partners the student has had. The woman claims the instructor then asked her to give him with lobster and moose meat in exchange for better grades—a request she knew was wrong, but ultimately granted.
The student said the man had followed her to her car to retrieve the lobster and moose meat; it was at this time he allegedly demanded the student have sex with him.
"He claimed I had to do it, as my grades depended on it," she recalled. "He continued to say 'Yes you will, you will do it,' over and over, even though I made it clear to him at this point that I was very uncomfortable."
She went on to add, "I knew I was not going to sleep with this [instructor], but I also did not want to fail because he made it clear that if I did not [have sex], I would fail."
The woman said she was overcome with fear after she reported the incident to another university employee. She said she worried no one would believe her, as she had only been enrolled for a month and the instructor "had taught for a while."
"Within the hour I reported him, I had spoken to the heads of departments, human resources, and student services," she said. "They were all very supportive. This was a huge deal to them, and they made it very clear to me that they were going to help me through this every step of the way. He was suspended from teaching the next day."
The student said the school informed her two weeks ago that the instructor had been fired. She said he was given the right to appeal, but does not know if he intends to exercise that option.
"He will never be able to approach any other vulnerable student at the university again," the woman said. "I would not return to the school if I had to face him in the hallways. The university is a great university with a diverse population and it’s close to home. So yes, I am so pleased with the outcome, because now I can return to school without the fear that I will meet up with him there."