The University of Manitoba and math professor Gabor Lukacs are in court this morning over the awarding of a PhD to a student who did not meet all the requirements. Lukacs filed a court application in the fall to reverse a decision, made by the Dean of Graduate Studies John Doering, to waive an exam requirement for the student. The student had failed the exam twice and under faculty rules, he was required to withdraw from the program. The student, whose name is protected by a publication ban, is said to suffer from exam anxiety.
In response, university president David Barnard sent a letter notifying Lukacs that he would be suspended for three months, on the grounds that he violated the student’s privacy. In court Lukacs is expected to argue that Doering, as an administrator, had no authority to waive the exam, particularly since it was against the wishes of the Graduate Studies Committee in the math department. The university for its part will likely argue that Lukacs has no standing, and that he cannot claim to have been harmed in any way by the decision.
UPDATE: This story has been updated here.