Philadelphia partner Scott Coffina wrote an article for Inside Higher Ed titled, “When in Doubt, Investigate.”
Scott, a partner in the firm’s White Collar Criminal Defense Practice Group and former Assistant U.S. Attorney, reflects on the profusion of scandals at high-profile colleges in the past several years, from disgraced football coaches to deaths on campus.
He says: “[t]here are two main lessons to be learned from this litany of scandals. First, no one is bigger than the institution itself. … Second, deal with your problems; don’t bury them.”
Scott explains what institutions can do to avoid sweeping mistakes “under the locker-room rug,” including conducting a sound investigation at the first hint of trouble (perhaps using an outside entity), and reinforcing open communication to build trust and overcome resistance.
“Just as with cancer, early detection is the key to a cure,” says Scott. Administrations should “take the small, discreet hit today, rather than the inevitable public flogging amid a circus atmosphere” that comes with burying a scandal.
To read the entire article, click here.