After launching a petition via change.org on July 16, the USC Roski School of Art and Design graduating MFA class of 2015 has delivered a petition of over 760 signatures demanding the removal of Dean Erica Muhl from leading the internationally-renowned program.
The entire first-year MFA class withdrew amid allegations of a retroactively dismantled funding model and drastic changes to the existing faculty structure and curriculum, on May 15, followed by a petition by the 2015 graduating class – including Jacinto Astiazarán, Lena Daly, Orr Herz, Veli-Matti Hoikka, Sofía Londoño, Alli Miller, Alana Riley and Fleurette West – a month later.
Here’s their statement:
“We have been overwhelmed by the public’s response. At over 760 signatures and counting, our petition on Change.org calls for the immediate removal of Dean Muhl in light of the dramatic downfall of our program. Our experience negotiating Dean Muhl’s inexperience and unwillingness to reasonably communicate curricular changes significantly encumbered our degree progress at USC. As you will notice, Provost Quick’s response highlights the extent to which USC’s leadership has allowed such egregious failures to occur.
USC Roski’s tumult is symptom of a much larger problem in the increasingly corporatized system of higher education. We would be grateful for you to share this important story with your readers as we deliver this petition to USC’s leadership.
Attached are a document containing signees’ notes of solidarity as well as full signee list, and the response from USC Provost Michael Quick to our original letter.
Thank you again for your continued support.
The USC Roski MFA class of 2015
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