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Columbia faculty pass no confidence vote against President Shafik. Here's what it means.

Columbia University faculty pass "no confidence" vote against President Shafik
Columbia University faculty pass "no confidence" vote against President Shafik 00:26

NEW YORK -- Some Columbia University faculty members have passed a resolution of no confidence in President Minouche Shafik.

It's in response to Shafik's handling of pro-Palestinian demonstrations on campus.

Faculty of Arts and Sciences votes in favor of "no confidence" resolution

The proposed resolution claimed Shafik put students at risk by calling police to clear out an encampment in April and violated fundamental requirements of academic freedom.

Columbia's Faculty of Arts and Sciences, consisting of 899 members, voted on the resolution. Of the 709 members who completed a ballot, 65% voted in favor of the resolution and 29% voted against it, with 6% abstaining.

In a letter sent to Arts and Sciences faculty Thursday, the dean wrote the vote "makes clear a level of frustration and disappointment among many."

"With the vote now completed, the more consequential question is how we move forward focusing on the aims and goals that I believe the faculty and the university's highest leadership share," the dean continued.

According to a university official, the vote is symbolic and designed to send a message to the university's Board of Trustees that they've lost trust in Shafik.

Columbia officials respond to no confidence vote

A spokesperson for Columbia University said in a statement, "President Shafik continues to consult regularly with members of the community, including faculty, administration, and trustees, as well as with state, city, and community leaders. She appreciates the efforts of those working alongside her on the long road ahead to heal our community."

A university official noted the vote was conducted by a small portion of Columbia's faculty, which is made up of over 4,600 full-time members.

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