University of New Hampshire professor Craig Chapman has been removed from the classroom after evidence surfaced that he was pretending to be a woman of color online, The Daily Beast reports.
Chapman, who tweeted under the screen name The Science Femme, repeatedly used his false identity as a weapon in online arguments. He also bragged under the handle that he’d helped squash a statement by his department in support of recent social justice protests.
As The Science Femme, he claimed to end his “dept’s woke statement on recent social unrest...removing all woke terminology from the statement including anti-racism, white supremacy, white privilege, and claims of systemic racism.”
When people accused The Science Femme of working against the interests of people of color, Chapman claimed to be one himself. He said he was “an immigrant woman of color who grew up in poverty, sleeping on a dirt floor.”
He was eventually found out when Twitter users found remarkably similar posts from both The Science Femme and Chapman’s personal account.
An internal email from UNH’s chemistry chair confirmed that The Science Femme was Chapman.
“The fake twitter account was in fact set up and run by Craig,” it read.“There were a large number of things written by Craig that ranged from unfortunate to hurtful to deeply offensive. These statements do not represent me, nor the collegial, collaborative, accepting department in which I have had the privilege to work for the past 25 years."
The university, for its part, has placed Chapman on leave while they investigate.
“UNH was recently made aware of allegations on social media about a member of its faculty,” they said in a statement to The Daily Beast. “We are deeply troubled by what we’ve learned so far and immediately launched an investigation. The employee at the center of allegations on social media is on leave and not in the classroom.”