A University of Georgia administrator recently resigned after being accused of having improper relationships with students and subordinates, according to The Red & Black.
T.W. Cauthen, the former associate vice president for academic, campus and community partnerships in the Division of Student Affairs, exchanged more than 200 text messages in 2015 with a student he met on a dating app. The student reported the exchanges to UGA in November, six months later, because Cauthen had been ignoring him.
An Equal Opportunity Office investigation found that Cauthen did not violate the university’s anti-harassment policy because the exchanges were “consensual and mutual.” However, the report criticized him for potentially abusing his authority and blurring the boundaries between his personal and professional lives.
In February, Vice President for Student Affairs Victor Wilson and Provost Pamela Whitten reassigned Cauthen to an off-campus job with the provost’s office where he would have no contact with students, then two weeks later placed him on administrative leave and told him his contract would not be renewed, at which point Cauthen resigned.
The EOO investigation found that Cauthen had been romantically involved with students and subordinates in the past, but that those relationships did not violate university policy because they occurred prior to Sept. 15, 2011, when the policy discouraged but did not prohibit such relationships.
According to The Red & Black, Cauthen flirted with coworkers and was once seen kissing a graduate student in a local bar.