Williams should fire Professor Bernard Moore immediately: stop his paycheck, cancel his health insurance, kick him out of College housing, empty his office, ban him from campus.

First, by most accounts we have seen, he is a horrible professor, giving everyone is his class As, while not reading their work nor providing feedback. Second, he has produced no meaningful academic research of any sort. (No one will be surprised if we discover that his Ph.D. was plagiarized.) Third, and most importantly, he has pled guilty to fraud, including acts committed during his time at Williams. He is not fit to enter a Williams classroom.

Fortunately, the College has uncontested grounds on which to proceed. Moore claimed to Williams that he had a B.A. (1978) from the University of California, Los Angeles. (See page 349 of the course catalog: pdf). In his proffer to the court, Moore admits that he “has never received any undergraduate degree.” There are few worse sins in an academic community than lying about your educational credentials. Such a lie is cause for immediate dismal. There is no need for further investigation, for weighing the good that Moore has done in arranging campus events with the poor instruction that he has inflicted on his students. Every day that Moore stays on the College payroll, enjoys the use of a campus office and benefits from the resources of the Sawyer library — every day of delay sends a signal to the Williams community that academic honesty is optional.

This is the biggest test that Bill Wagner will face during his presidency. How will he do?

UDPATE: See the faculty handbook for details on the dismissal procedure. Depending on how intransigent Moore wants to make things, this could take a while. And, given that he is still being paid, why wouldn’t he drag it out?

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