Religious University Plans to Fire Transgendered Professor


By this June, Julie Nemecek, a professor at Spring Arbor University in Michigan who used to be an assistant dean, will be removed from the university payroll completely. Why? Nemecek says it's because she used to go by the name John. The transgendered professor filed a complaint with the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission in October of last year, after the university slashed her salary by 20 percent, mandated that she work primarily from home, and "forbade her to dress like a woman on the campus or to talk to other university employees about her decision to change genders," the Chronicle of Higher Education reports.

One thing you should know about Spring Arbor University: It was started and continues to be influenced by the Free Methodist Church, as you can tell from the university's website, which posts the church's Articles of Confederation. "We expect our faculty to model Christian character as an example for our students," the university explained in a statement, according to the Jackson Citizen-Patriot's story on the decision. Faculty who "persist with activities that are inconsistent with the Christian faith" are subject to firing, the Citizen-Patriot reported. The university and the professor plan to meet with mediators next month.