U. of R. professor placed on leave pending special committee's investigation

Dr. Florian Jaeger (Provided photo)

Rochester, N.Y. – The University of Rochester professor at the center of an EEOC complaint has been placed on administrative leave pending a Special Committee investigation into his case.

Dr. Florian Jaeger is the subject of a complaint, in which 11 students and faculty members accused him of stalking, pressuring students to share drugs and have sex and creating a hostile environment.

A federal complaint is also accusing the University of Rochester of performing a shoddy investigation into the allegations once they first came to light last year.

The allegations sparked calls for resignations, a hunger strike and protests.

As a result of Jaeger being placed on leave, Lindsay Wrobel - who had started a hunger strike pending Jaeger's removal - announced she would be ending her strike. She added that she is ready to go on strike again if the need arises.

"It's a step, it's a step in the right direction," said Wrobel, who says she received an email from Jaeger before the announcement Tuesday, saying he was concerned about her health and asking for time to respond to the EEOC complaint.

Tuesday, the University of Rochester Board of Trustees announced it had appointed a special committee to look into all matters of the EEOC complaint and review, “the University’s processes and procedures related to addressing claims of sexual abuse and harassment.”

“This is a matter of utmost importance to the entire University community, and the Special Committee will conduct its investigation with complete independence, with access to all relevant information, and receive total cooperation from the University,” said Chairman Danny Wegman in a statement released Tuesday.

Wrobel added that she was pleased with Jaeger being placed on administrative leave and the University of Rochester's promise to put a student on the investigative committee, as well as its commitment to look into university policies about sexual harassment complaints.

"The students on this campus are really a community, are really a family, and we need to do a better job at supporting each other and making that true not just in words, but in reality," said Wrobel. "I think it's our job to help each other out and fight for each other, so this is a safe place for all of us and an inclusive place for all of us, and everybody can have a time here that's enjoyable and where they feel heard and respected."

University of Rochester President Joel Seligman said he welcomed the investigation, saying faculty, students and staff at the university deserved, “full and transparent accounting on this matter.”

This is a developing story. 13WHAM will provide updates as they become available.

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