On Wednesday evening, a day after five of his staunchest supporters on the Cooper Union’s board of trustees resigned, the college’s embattled president Jamshed Bharucha announced that he will resign at the end of June.
The board of trustees of the Cooper Union has offered not to renew the contract of the school’s current president, Jamshed Bharucha, if it would help bring an end to New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s investigation into the university’s management.
Five alumni and admitted students have filed suit against Cooper Union’s board of trustees, alleging that their behavior leading up to the historic end of free tuition violated duties prescribed by the school’s charter, the Wall Street Journal reported.
For a few hours last Sunday, e-flux’s Chinatown offices were bathed in red light as Free Cooper Union held an interpretive reading of the 41-page trustee meeting transcript first leaked to the Village Voice over the summer.
For the latest in their inventive visual mockery of Cooper Union president and unalloyed economic realist Jamshed Bharucha, the student activists of Free Cooper Union satirically reconfigured a Banksy work that popped up near the school’s campus over the weekend.
In a message sent at 4:07 pm to the Cooper Union community, Jamshed Bharucha announced today an agreement with the activist group Free Cooper Union, which had ended its occupation and vacated his office on Friday. The email, which was preceded a few minutes earlier by a campuswide message containing the text of the agreement drawn up with the students, ended on a conciliatory note: “We may not all agree on everything we face but I am committed to lead Cooper Union in a way that places the institution in a strong position for the future.”
I was walking around the East Village this morning, as is my wont, and happened upon a familiar face. The kindly visage in question belonged to not-quite-mediagenic Jamshed Bharucha, president of Cooper Union, “the embattled New York college” (Art in America).
Last night, at a little before 11 pm EST, Cooper Union president Jamshed Bharucha spontaneously ended a community forum he was holding in the basement of the Foundation Building and ascended to his seventh floor office to face his critics for the first time. The result was a rather long and uninspiring chat punctuated by raucous and disruptive moments of commentary by many long-silent insiders, including untenured faculty, administrators, and engineering students.
If getting fired is unpleasant, what of that special hell where hundreds of your staff and colleagues publicly call for your resignation? Just ask Cooper Union president Jamshed Bharucha, whose imperious refusal to communicate even the most threadbare reaction to his mounting critics has added a new, Spartan character to the meaning of “embattled.”
At roughly 11 am today, a group of 30 students occupied the offices of embattled Cooper Union President Jamshed Bharucha. Bharucha himself is not present, however, and unlike the previous occupation, the students have not barricaded themselves in and are being allowed to freely enter and exit the building. Black banners signifying the takeover have also been unfurled from the second floor windows of the Foundation Building.
In a memorable appearance at St. Mark’s Bookshop in the fall of 2011, Slavoj Zizek held forth on the importance of saving the bookstore from its then-impending eviction from a Cooper Union-owned building, referring repeatedly to the predatory landlord as “the Union Cooper.” The mangy Slovenian’s malapropism seems downright prescient these days, as the university’s community of students, faculty, and alumni looks inward to rebuild the century-old promise of their institution.