U of Delaware hiring practices bring anti-nepotism policies into focus
- The University of Delaware and Wilmington University are profiled in the News Journal as examples of private institutions receiving federal dollars, but which are generally exempt from state ethics laws on nepotism and conflicts of interest.
- The feature profiles personnel disclosures from both schools, which show instances of spouses being employed at the schools, and companies with trustee connections receiving contracts from the schools. In 2014, UD paid close to $183,000 to DuPont Co., whose former company executive, James Borel, also serves as a university trustee.
- Adelphi University, Luna Community College and Winthrop University are also cited as examples of institutional anti-nepotism policies being stretched or violated to secure jobs or perks for presidents.
Anti-nepotism laws have been in intense focus in states like Iowa, where faculty and observers have criticized the potentially improper relations between board members and presidents in business dealings and hiring practices. Some experts say that some levels of nepotism help to cultivate trust and productivity in organizations from the top-down, and with proper transparency and compliance, do not present issues of integrity.
But cases like Ecclesia College often provide the negative side of familial connections in executive administration, and could be a cautionary tale of how public perception and politics can damage a brand when nepotism goes wrong.
- The News Journal University hiring, ethics conflicts a national issue
- Education Dive There's a fine line between good board-president relations and cronyism
- Education Dive Ecclesia College at center of political kickback controversy