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OU professor Peter Gade to step back from journalism capstone after backlash over use of racial slur

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Oklahoma drought here to stay, worse is yet to come

Gaylord College Dean Ed Kelley announced Friday that professor Peter Gade would "step down" from teaching the journalism capstone course for the remainder of the semester after Gade used a racial slur in class Tuesday.

Gade faced significant backlash from his capstone students as well as other members of the OU community after he used the word "n-----" in comparison to the phrase "OK, boomer." 

In an email from Kelley to members of Gaylord College, Kelley announced Gaylord Associate Dean David Craig would take over teaching the course for the rest of the spring semester. The statement did not say Gade would step back from any other responsibilities within the college. 

"Dr. Gade also has agreed that this episode is a chance to learn and grow," Kelley said in the statement. "Thus, he will engage in OU's program in culturally competent communication over the next month. Further, he has agreed to meet one-on-one with OU's team in the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in sessions over the coming semester."

Students in Gade's class met Thursday with Gaylord College leadership as well as Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion Belinda Higgs Hyppolite and Dean of Students David Surratt. During the meeting, students told administrators that they felt Gade should no longer teach the class.  

The statement also says Gaylord College faculty and staff will participate in an unspecified training directed by the office of diversity and inclusion. 

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