WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The University of North Carolina Wilmington has announced that controversial professor Mike Adams will retire in August.
According to a statement shared by the university on Monday, the decision comes after Adams had a meeting with Chancellor Jose Sartarelli.
“Over the past several weeks, many of you have inquired about the status of a UNCW faculty member, Dr. Mike Adams, in light of the public attention generated by comments he made on his personal social media channels,” UNCW wrote in a news release.
The university says Adams will retire from UNCW on August 1.
Students had mixed emotions when they heard the news.
“We were happy, but not completely satisfied in a sense,” UNCW Black Student Union President Chris Neal said. “It’s kind of like he’s getting away with everything he’s done, and it’s kind of like, ‘Okay, just leave and we won’t speak about it.'”
Neal and several students say Adams’ retirement is bittersweet, because they’re happy to see him go, but it’s not in the way they had hoped.
“To know that students will no longer be subjected to him is an incredible victory, and I’m so, so immensely grateful for that,” UNCW student Kaela Bedics said.
Bedics says students had been pushing to see Adams fired, but says his exit is progress.
“To know that he’s not there and that students are now free to voice their opinions and discuss the causes that really matter for them is so freeing and so liberating,” she said. “I am incredibly proud to say I had a part in this.”
At the beginning of June, the Facebook group, “Justice and Equality for UNCW” emerged, and in less than a month, it grew to almost 8,000 students, alumni and other community activists. The group was calling for the university to fire Adams.
“I think all of us worked collectively together to put the pressure on the university, so that they know how they feel, and I felt like the university heard what we were saying,” Neal said. “I hope that the community and the university and students and alumni, we all collectively still work together, because there are still a lot of things that need to be changed.”
Students say their work isn’t done yet.
“To make sure that everybody in this administration who has been complicit in supporting Mr. Adams is really taken to task,” Bedics said.
WWAY reached out to Adams for a comment, but hasn’t heard back.