Who is Alex Sharland?
Alex Sharland is a professor of Marketing at the University of South Alabama. She is one of the three professors at the University of South Alabama who has been placed on leave after photos surfaced of them wearing and holding racist symbols at a campus event in 2014, according to a statement from the school.
Alex Sharland University of South Alabama
Alex Sharland earned his doctorate at The Florida State University in the fields of Marketing and International Business. In previous lives, he taught at Barry University and Hofstra University. He has been in the USA for nigh on twelve years.
Dr. Sharland’s recent work focuses on Sovereign Wealth Funds and the role of private/corporate foreign investment in the economic development of the small island and Caribbean economies. He continues to be an avid supporter of the sport of rugby and is the faculty advisor for the University rugby club.
Bob Wood, Alex Sharland, and Teresa Weldy Suspended
In two photos verified by university spokesperson Lance Crawford, one professor is seen wearing a Confederate soldier’s uniform, while 2 other professors posed with a whip and noose. According to a college statement, the photos were taken at a campus costume party held at the Mitchell College of Business.
Alex Sharland Petition
University students created an online petition calling for their firing. It has more than 3,000 signatures. “The fact that these professors are still currently employed by the University shows a deep failure to commit to a safe, welcoming environment for students of all backgrounds,” the petition said.
“Racism cannot simply be given a slap on the wrist. It must be addressed as the serious issue it is.”
University President Tony Waldrop said the university acknowledged failings in its initial response.
“The actions taken in response to these pictures, which were brought to the attention of University leadership in 2020, should have been stronger and broader, and should have more clearly demonstrated our unwavering commitment to a safe and welcoming environment for every member of our community”, he said.
Alex Sharland Fired
Waldrop said Friday an investigation into the incident will be conducted by Suntrease Williams-Maynard, a former trial attorney for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in Mobile, Alabama, and a former assistant U.S. attorney for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Alabama.
Of the three teachers involved in the photo, two issued statements through the university.
“I regret the decision, and I understand the hurtful nature of these symbols, which do not reflect my beliefs. Working at the University of South Alabama, guiding students through their academic careers, and having a positive impact on them as they prepare for their next steps in life has been one of the greatest honors of my professional life,” Wood continued. “I have learned from this error, and I am committed to doing better in the future.”
Sharland said, “In retrospect, I can see why someone might find the image hurtful, and I regret this attempt at humor that clearly failed. It was not my intent to hurt or be offensive, and if anyone is offended by this picture I apologize.”