Columbia Professor Files Sexual Harassment Suit Against University
Enrichetta Ravina thought the professor was her mentor, helping her get access to an invaluable trove of data for her research into how workers allocate their retirement savings. It was scholarship, she believed, that could help her earn tenure at Columbia Business School.I suppose it speaks to my continuing naivete, but every time one of these things hits the news, I am amazed at how respectable, well-counseled institutions respond to complaints.
But then, she said, the comments started. The professor told her about watching pornography and his sexual exploits, she said. He started making advances toward her, calling her “sexy.” And, she said, he had the ability to have that crucial data set taken away.
In a lawsuit against the university filed on Tuesday in Federal District Court, Ms. Ravina said she complained repeatedly to Columbia officials about the situation, but that they only dismissed and belittled her. ...
Beginning in May 2014, Ms. Ravina brought her complaints to senior faculty members and administrators at the business school, the lawsuit says. One dean, the lawsuit says, called her circumstances a “soap opera.” Others told her to forget her complaints and to walk away from her research project. In November 2014, the lawsuit says, the office that ensures the university is in compliance with Title IX, which prohibits gender discrimination in educational institutions, found no violation.