Syracuse University on Thursday disinvited a Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist who was scheduled to participate in an upcoming journalism program because he was recently in Liberia covering the ongoing Ebola crisis.
The dean of Syracuse’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, Lorraine Branham, spoke to News Photographer magazine about the decision to disinvite photojournalist Michel du Cille.
“He was disinvited because of concerns that were generated by some students that led me to believe that it would lead to even more concerns,” she said. “So it was in the best interest of the students for me to withdraw the invitation.”
Du Cille, who was in Liberia covering the Ebola crisis for The Washington Post, told the magazine that he was upset about the university’s decision.
“I am pissed off,” du Cille told the magazine. “I am disappointed in the level of journalism at Syracuse, and I am angry that they missed a great teaching opportunity. Instead they have decided to jump in with the mass hysteria.”
“If she [Branham] had bothered to discuss it with me, she would have known,” du Cille continued. “But they’re just not going to take the direct word of the CDC and the director, and 21 days of monitoring means nothing to them because they’re just being alarmed.”
Du Cille had been monitoring his condition since returning from Liberia and had not exhibited symptoms during the 21 day incubation period, which is provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.