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Tewhey's Resignation Unclear

By Jeremy Hylton
Editor in Chief

Following charges in a Wednesday issue of Counterpoint that James R. Tewhey, former associate dean for student affairs, did not resign last spring, the Institute issued a clarification of its statement about Tewhey's resignation yesterday afternoon.

"In response to questions about Mr. Tewhey's public role, I confirm what has been stated previously: Mr. Tewhey has not held the position of associate dean in the Dean's Office since late April," said Kenneth D. Campbell, director of the news office.

Campbell said he could not confirm, deny, or comment on whether Tewhey was still an employee of the Institute in any other capacity.

Joan F. Rice, director of personnel, did not return several phone calls made to her earlier this week.

Tewhey stepped down as the head of the residence and campus activities section of the Office of the Dean for Undergraduate Education and Student Affairs on April 20, according to Campbell.

At the time, Tewhey was involved in a court battle with Katherine M. Nolan, associate director of student financial aid, with whom he had an 18-month affair. Tewhey was under a restraining order preventing contact with Nolan.

In a statement at the time, Provost Mark S. Wrighton said, "Jim was in an untenable situation. He had been considering leaving since March and felt the time now had come to resign. I agreed with his assessment and accepted his resignation without any prejudgement on the harassment allegations involved in the court order."

According to an interview published in Wednesday's Counterpoint, Tewhey denied that he resigned on April 20. Instead, he claimed that he had told Wrighton only of his intention to resign.

Tewhey's contention contradicts a statement he made on April 21. "On April 20, 1993, I offered to resign my position as associate dean for student affairs at MIT," Tewhey said. He could not be reached for further comment yesterday.

According to Tech Talk, Tewhey also informed his staff of his decision to resign on April 20.

In his statement yesterday, Campbell also commented on the Institute privacy policy and Tewhey's severance package. He said, "I have been asked to comment on Jim Tewhey's reported statement to Counterpoint (distributed Sept. 29--) regarding what he said were `severance arrangements with MIT.' "

"At most major organizations, severance arrangements are part of standard personnel policies, developed for basic humane concerns. If such arrangements are made at MIT, they fall under MIT's privacy policies, and it would be inappropriate for MIT to confirm or deny or comment further," Campbell continued.

Section 3.17 of MIT's Policies and Procedures reads: "Ultimate protection comes from a community-wide awareness of the importance of privacy in our society."