A correction, in the form of a leak.
Contrary to newly hired VP of Communications Justin Harmon’s statement published today in the Wall Street Journal that “the board never pursued a suggestion to close the art school,” an additional document leaked this morning by Free Cooper Union shows that by March 2013 the Board had so deeply pursued closure of the School of Art that a secret motion to revive the admissions process was necessary.
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Four years ago, the Wall Street Journal published an article with the more chipper title, “One College Sidesteps the Crisis: As Many Endowments Suffer, No-Tuition Cooper Union Builds, and Basks.” John Michaelson, chair of Cooper’s investment committee, posed with former President George Campbell in the still-under-construction New Academic Building. Their conversation with the Journal consisted of lies (or more generously half-truths) about the strength of Cooper’s endowment — and even included some trashing of “the Yale model” of investing, for good measure. A May 2013 New York Times article told a strikingly different story: criticizing Cooper’s board as both “irresponsible” and having made “a long series of what look like bad decisions.”