Archive for Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Kansas University censures professor for behavior during incident involving parking ticket

July 12, 2011


Kansas University has censured an architecture professor after an altercation involving a parking ticket.

Dennis Sander, a KU associate professor of architecture, was censured this week after a Feb. 4 incident when he “engaged in unprofessional, threatening, and abusive behavior” toward two student employees and a KU public safety officer, according to the censure notice.

KU Police Capt. Schuyler Bailey said Sander was yelling and cursing at the students over a parking ticket, but the issue was resolved and no criminal charges were filed.

That makes Sander the second professor the university has censured since December 2010. KU censured David Guth, associate professor of journalism, for engaging “in unprofessional, threatening, and abusive behavior towards another faculty member” during an Oct. 8, 2010, incident.

Censure remains relatively rare at KU. Jill Jess, a university spokeswoman, said before those two incidents, the previous time the university censured a faculty member was in 1993.

In both recent cases, notification of the censure appeared in The Oread, the university’s newsletter for faculty and staff, in its “News in Brief” section.

“A ‘News in Brief’ section, whether in print or online, has been the consistent location for such notices to campus,” Jess said.

Censure is the third-most severe punishment a faculty member can receive, behind suspension and dismissal, and requires approval by the university chancellor as outlined in the university’s faculty rights code.

Complaints could come from a variety of sources, Jess said, but any complaint that could result in sanctions is reviewed by the provost. If that review determines that a faculty member could face sanctions, the faculty member is notified in writing and can request a hearing before either the university’s Judicial Board or its Faculty Rights Board.

The board forwards its recommendation to the chancellor, who makes the final decision on disciplinary action.

Jess did not say whether censure was the only disciplinary action taken against faculty members in these situations, calling them personnel matters.


HollisBrown 6 years, 9 months ago

How dare they ticket a professor! What an idiot. Ooooh, he got censured. cen·sure (snshr) n. 1. An expression of strong disapproval or harsh criticism. 2. An official rebuke, as by a legislature of one of its members. tr.v. cen·sured, cen·sur·ing, cen·sures 1. To criticize severely; blame. See Synonyms at criticize. 2. To express official disapproval of: "whether the Senate will censure one of its members for conflict of interest" (Washington Post).

Boy, that sounds pretty harsh. Especially for a professor. Yank his tenure. Some of the worst teachers I've had in my life were profs at KU.

ivalueamerica 6 years, 9 months ago

one thing is very dishonest about your comment HollisBrown.

He did not get censured according to Webster's Dictionary, he got censured according to the legal definition of KU's employment policy and while it is arguable that he should have been held to a greater level of accountability than he was, your suggestion that they merely said bad boy and nothing more is patently false.

There are ramification for censure on file including loss of raises, loss of promotion, loss of bonuses and if they build up, termination.

I also have to wonder if someone constantly runs into bad professors, are you sure it was all of them and not perhaps some aspect within yourself that created the negative situations?

question4u 6 years, 9 months ago

Why didn't the guy have the sense to stick to behavior that he wouldn't be censured for, like standing up on the floor of the Kansas House of Representatives and proposing that the people he was arguing with be shot from helicopters?

Currahee 6 years, 9 months ago

"World Class Staff that deserve raises" right there....

Mike Slack 6 years, 9 months ago

I'm a few hours late, but the first this brought to my mind was Mangino's infamous parking lot encounter(s).

Mike Slack 6 years, 9 months ago

I'm a few hours late, but the first this brought to my mind was Mangino's infamous parking lot encounter(s).

overthemoon 6 years, 9 months ago

He's been pulling this sort of crap for 30 years. His list of atrocious behavior both in and out of the studio/classroom is the stuff of legends. What took so long?

Michael Sizemore 6 years, 9 months ago

+1 The guy had some real issues back in the day - guess not much has changed.

racerx 6 years, 9 months ago

Get your facts right. He makes quite a bit less than a "six figure" salary. You're thinking of all the cronies Brownback hired.

Scott Morgan 6 years, 9 months ago

Off subject but what ever happened to the Prof who claimed Pickup Driving Right Wing Roving Bands Of Violent Christians, Rural At That attacked him in the wee hours while he drove country roads?

If memory serves, this story went national.

BlackVelvet 6 years, 9 months ago

I'm betting he made the entire thing up.

equalaccessprivacy 6 years, 9 months ago

The Daily Kansan recently published a very colorful article about the disorderly behavior of the KU community toward the parking staff on campus.

KU personnel policies are worthy of Brownbackistan for sure. No educated person(or even mere Jayhawk, would-be human being) should ever be put in the position of being smeared by the ugly and abusive lies the incompetent and unethical Human Resources staff doesn't hesitate to lob at people and"officially" inform their supervisors of with zero due process . They are the local version of Fox news blaming the victims by using southern-justice tactics to blame the targets of their own KU-flavored crimes.

Possibly only tenure accorded Dennis Sander any small measure of decency and his legal rights to a hearing before this sanction occurred. This is actually the law and meant to protect all involved parties from unfair negative consequences, unnecessary lawsuits and other grief. KU does not often follow the law. HR "investigators" and their scoundrel bosses prefer to operate in secrecy so they can unfairly punish people with no due process at all. They are utterly clueless about employment and civil rights law and project their own hateful motives on others. What an unprofessional and substandard university!

The sad thing is even local conflict-of-interest law enforcement are in on the brutal scam of blaming the victim by filing false charges of threats and harassment. One would expect that if somebody were actually perceived as a threat they would certainly receive a police visit. The dumb local DAs and judges because they are all graduates of the same crummy state U. don't require any such standard of evidence before deciding to frame someone-- sordid dishonesty and lying liars rule the roost. It's an S & M dynamic. Never before have run into such poor excuses for thinking, caring, ethical human beings as in Douglas County.

Sigmund 6 years, 9 months ago

We're not laughing with you, we are laughing at you.

Frightwig 6 years, 9 months ago

You mention "blaming the victim" twice, yet there is no indication of that happening. The two student employees that Sander allegedly threatened and abused are not being blamed by anyone.

jonas_opines 6 years, 9 months ago

How many different profiles do you have?

Tom McCune 6 years, 9 months ago

Hmmm.... I wonder if "Dennis Sander" is an alias for a another architect who has been banned from these boards under 7 or 8 different screen names?

Sigmund 6 years, 9 months ago

And if Sanders does it again, we will send him yet another strongly worded letter!

jafs 6 years, 9 months ago

Sounds like you and the professor have similar issues.

Why not just quit if you don't like your job?

jafs 6 years, 9 months ago

"I tried to get fired and found it damn near impossible"

racerx 6 years, 9 months ago

Saying he makes "a six figure salary" is certainly patently false.

Vinny1 6 years, 9 months ago

Fire this idiot. He is the worst teacher in the School of Architecture.

Scott Morgan 6 years, 9 months ago

100,000 K is getting common. Kansas City Missouri has street crew folks making a run at this figure.

Vinny1 6 years, 9 months ago

The only reason Sander still has a job with the school is because he is tenured. He is the lowest paid tenured faculty in the school. Numerous verbal complaints have been "filed" by students, but the school can't fire him without cause because of his tenure. There are more than a few people high up in the school that would like to see him gone, but before that can happen they need some people (students) to go through the lengthy and intensive process of filing actual legit complaints against him.

Olympics 6 years, 9 months ago

I guess it depends on being so desperate in wanting to attack KU with accusations that are quickly shown to be wrong.

I don't care about this professor....he sounds like a jerk, but you have zero credibility.

How many more mis-statements are you planning on this one little story?

Vinny1 6 years, 9 months ago

lol what? I'm not attacking KU at all. And I promise I have far more credibility/knowledge of the issue than you do.

notanota 6 years, 9 months ago

Think the comment was directed at Hollis.

Chris Golledge 6 years, 9 months ago

Basically, the university charges its employees for the privilege of parking where they work. If their work calls for them to be at a meeting or whatever that is far from where their parking pass allows them to park, they have to choose between parking off-campus and taking extra time to do their job, or risk getting a ticket.

I wonder how much of the wages and salaries KU recoups through this practice, and I'm not surprised that employees get aggravated. As in, "We are going to pay you $X, but you'll have to give us some hundreds of that back for the privilege of parking on our land, where we want you to work."

It isn't just the salaried professors; it's everyone. The fees take a bigger chunk out of a cook's wages than a professor's salary, but the principle is the same.

Chris Golledge 6 years, 9 months ago

Just to be clear, I don't envy the poor schmoes who work at parking and have to put themselves between the employee and the administration, who should really be on the receiving end.

Scott Morgan 6 years, 9 months ago

What if any perks, grant money, life insurance, travel expenses, or other. I love Kansas, but we are far behind in showing total compensation for public figures. Salary often is just a screen.

For instance a former superintendent of a school district near here, not Lawrence was sort of fired a few years ago. Sort of because he actually wrote his own compensation package. Part of it made it very difficult to terminate him.

Besides computers, cars yes plural, salary/benefits for two years, use of district staff, the dude put in a vanilla looking life insurance policy. Vanilla turned to mucho dinero. When he left, he of course stopped his life insurance cashing it in for close to 500K.

Yet his 120K yearly salary seemed a good deal to some of the constituents. The man a public servant became a millionaire on a poor towns backs.

tomatogrower 6 years, 9 months ago

Wow, even I know not to mess with the parking Nazi's. This guy isn't bright enough to be a professor.

yourworstnightmare 6 years, 9 months ago

HollisBrown is using this incident as an excuse to rail against all KU faculty and the university in general. Jealous much, Hollis?

Sander made $61,105.63 in 2010 (

The fact that he has been at KU for many years, is still an associate professor, and makes only $61,105.63 suggests that he should have never been granted tenure. It also suggests that he should have been dismissed long ago for low performance.

This is the problem with tenure, especially at KU. Professors with tenure can be dismissed for low performance, but few administrators have the leadership, will, and work ethic to carry through a performance-based dismissal.

Vinny1 6 years, 9 months ago

The reason he is paid that low is because the school wants him to quit since they can't fire him. He is worthless and a horrible teacher.

yourworstnightmare 6 years, 9 months ago

They can fire him. They just lack the leadership and resolve to do it.

Terry Sexton 6 years, 9 months ago

I don't know which is more hilarious, this douche of a prof or the people railin' at Hollis. Both are very entertaining - as are you, HollisBrown. Fascinating, really. You should get paid for this stuff. Karma tole me she 'xpects me to buy you a beer someday. She's a drunken floozie, though, so we'll see.

yourworstnightmare 6 years, 9 months ago

That explains it. Provocateurs often do make fools of themselves for provocation's sake.

beatrice 6 years, 9 months ago

What does how he acts in a parking garage have to do with his job?

I'm not trying to defend his behavior, although he didn't kill anyone. He acted childish -- sounds like he behaved about as poorly as your average baseball manager arguing a call but not as badly as Mel Gibson getting a ticket. If he didn't work at the university, would people say he should lose his job over his antics?

Should our jobs be at risk when we act poorly away from work?

rumor_man 6 years, 9 months ago

I was always wondering what Deion Sanders was up too.

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