Should URI revoke Michael Flynn’s honorary degree?


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We still don’t know if the University of Rhode Island will revoke the honorary degree it awarded in 2014 to Michael Flynn, but the board may soon have a policy in place that would define the process for taking such action.

Under the former president of the URI David Dooley, the university was considering revoking the honorary degree awarded to Flynn, a decorated general who later adopted conspiracy theories and was expelled as a national security adviser under the former president Donald trump for misleading the administration about conversations he had with the Russian Ambassador to the United States.

Flynn then pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI, but was pardoned by Trump. The college took no action on Flynn until Dooley’s departure earlier this year.

Now Flynn’s fate at URI could end up in the hands of the new president Marc Parlange. The governance committee of the board is scheduled to meet at 2 p.m. Monday to discuss an honorary degree policy. The proposal sets out the process for awarding and revoking a diploma.

“If at any time during the life of an approved candidate or holder of an honorary degree, the university becomes aware of conduct incompatible with the values ​​and mission of the university, including documented evidence of criminal, unethical or immoral behavior or activity, the board has the right to revoke a standing approval at any time prior to the award of an honorary degree or to revoke the honorary degree ”, indicates the proposal.

The proposal goes on to say that if the board votes to revoke an honorary degree, the person must be notified by the president of the university.

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