UC-Santa Cruz

Jennifer Hidges/KCBS Radio

UC-Santa Cruz Professor Under Investigation For Allegedly Saying Student Is Terrorist

Jennifer Hodges
May 31, 2019 - 3:11 pm

SANTA CRUZ — A professor at UC-Santa Cruz has been put on paid leave as university officials investigate claims that he made sexual and racist remarks, including claims he referred to a Muslim graduate student as a terrorist. 

The complaint against computer science and engineering Professor Dimitris Achlioptas was lodged six months ago, but it took a petition with more than 500 signatures to launch a disciplinary review, students said.

“It’s really shocking, but it’s really kind of showcases the state of affairs of our nation as well. It’s kind of upsetting,” Preet, a biomolecular engineering student at the university, told KCBS Radio. “I wish it didn’t happen, and I wish he was a better person.”

Student Pranav Ragavan is looking for an explanation. He's wondering if there was a history between the professor and the student.

“I’m saying that could be a possibility because it’s just so surprising that a professor at UC Santa Cruz would do that,” he said.

In a statement, the university said it’s been investigating the claims, but must refrain from sharing details to protect the privacy of the parties involved.