Syracuse U. Prof Placed on Leave After Writing ‘Wuhan Flu’ in Syllabus

Syracuse Prof Jon Zubieta
Syracuse University

Syracuse University Professor Jon Zubieta was placed on leave this week after students complained about his use of the term “Wuhan flu” a syllabus for a Chemistry course. In the syllabus, Zubieta also referred to the virus as the “Chinese Communist Party Virus.” According to the university, Zubieta’s language is “offensive to Chinese, international and Asian-Americans everywhere.”

According to a report by Campus Reform, Syracuse University Professor Jon Zubieta was placed on leave this week over his inclusion of the term “Wuhan virus” in the syllabus for his Inorganic Chemistry course. The university claimed this week that Zubieta’s decision to use the term was “offensive” and “damaging” to the Syracuse community.

In a press release published on Tuesday, the university claimed that Zubieta was placed on leave over concerns that his use of the term “Wuhan flu” created a hostile environment for Asian students.

“The derogatory language used by a professor on his course syllabus is damaging to the learning environment for our students and offensive to Chinese, international and Asian-Americans everywhere who have experienced hate speech, rhetoric and actions since the pandemic began,” the university wrote in a statement.

The university suggested that they will sanction professors that use politically incorrect language. According to the press release, professors are encouraged to limit their speech to “productive” communication that is compatible with the tenets of “anti-racism.”

“We will not allow any member of our community to violate the University’s commitment to a safe, inclusive and welcoming learning and living environment,” the statement continued. “Professors are expected to be especially mindful of these goals, as they are the individuals entrusted to cultivate productive, professional and supportive classrooms for our students. Syracuse University is committed to being an anti-racist community and will take swift action to confront bias and hate.”

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