UMES Weighing Options on Whether to Rescind Cosby's Honorary Deg - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

UMES Weighing Options on Whether to Rescind Cosby's Honorary Degree

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The University of Maryland Eastern Shore in Princess Anne (Photo: WBOC News) The University of Maryland Eastern Shore in Princess Anne (Photo: WBOC News)

PRINCESS ANNE, Md.- Bill Cosby was awarded an honorary degree at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore in 1998. After sexual assault charges were filed against the actor late last month, UMES is weighing its options whether to rescind his degree.

In a statement, UMES President Dr. Juliette Bell said, "We are dismayed at the recent charges and will continue to assess our options, one of which is to recommend that the Board rescind the honorary degree."

Taj Showalter is a junior at UMES and said he feels Cosby is being unfairly targeted because of his celebrity status. 

"I believe that his honorary degree should stay," Showalter said. "I'm not saying what he did was right or wrong; I'm speaking that we don't know necessarily if it is true or false."

Showalter said in his opinion he doesn't feel it's right to take away his honorary degree because Cosby has donated a lot money and has done a lot for people who are less fortunate. He said his honorary degree should not be taken away because he still made those contributions. 

At a coffee shop in Princess Anne, George Gray had a different opinion about Cosby's honorary degree status. 

"I would have no problem with them taking it away because in my opinion, he did what he was charged with and he should be punished," Gray said. 

The final decision to rescind Cosby's honorary degree does not solely rest with UMES. Once the university's in-house evaluation is complete, its recommendations will be forwarded to the University of Maryland Board of Regents for further consideration. 

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