The University of Iowa’s recently hired Associate Vice President for Diversity has resigned just seven weeks after taking the post.
TaJuan Wilson, who took over as the associate vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion at the University of Iowa, resigned from the position this week. Wilson, would have earned a salary of $224,000 each year in the role, claims that the University of Iowa is “not the right fit” for him.
A local news report claims that the publicly-funded University of Iowa spent $103,592 on a consulting firm that hand-selected Wilson for the role. The firm will search for a new candidate at no additional charge because Wilson left his post within three months of his start date.
The university hired consultant Isaacson-Miller to search for a chief diversity officer — paying the firm to date $103,592, which includes $21,593 for travel and advertising expenses. An original agreement estimated Isaacson-Miller’s fee at $66,666 — or one third of the hired candidate’s salary.
Although Wilson has resigned from the university, he will remain on the payroll for more than five months. According to the school, during that time he will work “on initiatives that support the university’s work to become a more inclusive and equitable campus.”
Breitbart News reported in May that the University of Iowa will spend almost $3 million to fund their diversity, equity, and inclusion office. Almost $2 million of that total budget will be spent on salaries for the 32 employees that work in the department.
According to the department’s spokesperson, the rest of the budget is used for the planning of campus events. “In the most recent events, our office partnered with the UI Diversity Councils to host a welcome reception at the beginning of the academic year and with the Diversity Councils and the Office of the Provost for a spring mixer. The budget for this event pays for space and food,” the spokesperson said earlier this year.
Many colleges and universities around the country have seen their “diversity” office budgets bloat to millions of dollars over the past decade.