Did Utah Valley University Fire Business Prof For Being Too Tough?

Ann McClure's picture
Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Business scholar Steven Maranville left a tenured appointment with the University of Houston to teach at Utah Valley University two years ago, but officials fired him after a one-year probationary period when they concluded his teaching did not suit their students.

According to a lawsuit filed Oct. 14 in U.S. District Court, Maranville’s lawyers allege UVU administrators justified the dismissal based on student complaints that his “capstone” course in business strategies was too rigorous and his Socratic style intimidated them.

“A number of students liked him a lot and said so. The brass came in and liked what he was doing. [Maranville] wanted students to get together in small groups and chew over the topics they were studying,” said his attorney, Robert Sykes. “They get him up here and toss him under the bus because some of the students wanted high school.”

Because of the pending litigation, UVU officials referred The Tribune to the Utah Attorney General’s Office, which will represent the school in the suit.

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