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Naydeen González-De Jesús out as SAC president 5 months after clash over Palestine teach-in

A parking sign with a Palestinian flag sticker on it in front of the Fletcher Administration Building on San Antonio College's campus.
Josh Peck
Naydeen González-De Jesús has left her role as San Antonio College president for a job at the Alamo Colleges District (ACD). ACD did not explain the reason for the move.

Alamo Colleges announced on Monday that Naydeen González-De Jesús would no longer serve as president of San Antonio College.

In a statement ACD explained that she "will transition to a new role within the Alamo Colleges District as the Presidential Project Executive."

Her departure came six weeks after TPR reported on her handling of an October “Teach-In for Palestine” event that garnered criticism from the SAC community and the national Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE), which said the result of administration’s intervention in the event was “the definition of a chilling effect.”

SAC’s student government, faculty senate, and a majority of top administrators all spoke strongly against González-De Jesús’ handling of the October “Teach-In for Palestine” event.

It was advertised as a way to educate interested students about the history of the region of Israel and Palestine. It was also meant to offer context for the renewed conflict that began earlier that month with Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack in Israel and which was escalating further with Israeli airstrikes in Gaza.

The student government body and the administrators sent separate “NO CONFIDENCE” letters to Alamo Colleges District (ACD) Chancellor Mike Flores in the days after the scheduled event, and faculty senate approved a censure vote for both González-De Jesús and SAC Vice President for Academic Success Cassie Rincones in December.

A sign on San Antonio College's campus with directions to campus buildings.
Josh Peck
The letter from members of González-De Jesús' leadership team said she “does not seem to understand what constitutes academic freedom and basic students’ rights to free expression.”

Administrators said González-De Jesús had attempted to cancel the event entirely, over concerns that it would present a one-sided view of the conflict. She eventually decided to postpone it and request a change of the event’s name to “Palestine 101.”

The faculty senate resolution said investigations into faculty members over their organization of the event proceeded “unfairly and unethically” and in a manner that could “severely undermine academic freedom.”

A statement from ACD explained that González-De Jesús will be “focusing on district-wide initiatives to address the needs of target populations within our colleges and communities” such as incarcerated and bilingual students.

ACD did not respond to TPR’s request for comment about why González-De Jesús was leaving the president’s office just 14 months after she entered it in January 2023.

González-De Jesús also did not respond to TPR’s request for comment.

A statement from Flores sent out to members of the SAC community included a quote from González-De Jesús.

“It has been a pleasure to serve the SAC community,” she said in the statement. “I am excited about working alongside Chancellor Dr. Flores, whose support has been invaluable to our collective success.”

Also, TPR’s most recent reporting revealed text messages between González-De Jesús and an acquaintance where the individual referred to LGBTQ+ students who publicly criticized González-De Jesús as “sodomites.”

González-De Jesús said she cut ties with that individual following the messages.

San Antonio College President Naydeen González-De Jesús said she “categorically denounce[s]” comments made by an individual she exchanged text messages with who said LGBTQ+ students who complained about González-De Jesús to the Alamo Colleges District board were “sodomites.”

Ethan Wilson, one of the LGBTQ+ students who criticized González-De Jesús and who has previously called for her removal, said it was good that she was gone, but that they were disappointed she would remain at ACD.

“I don’t think she deserves to work at the college, I don’t think people who associate with individuals like that should be working in a college space at all,” Wilson said. “I don’t think she has any right to work with the Alamo Colleges District, especially after how much shame she has brought to their name, how much ridiculous stuff she’s done in the name of the Alamo Colleges District.”

Wilson added that they were disappointed ACD wasn’t being open about why González-De Jesús was leaving the presidency.

“Why do it and not say anything?” Wilson said. “Why do it and not say this is for all of our students who feel like Dr. Naydeen has made the college an unsafe space, or this is for all of the students who have seen us lie and lie again and now we’re finally taking some accountability for it, but even in taking accountability they’re incapable of being truthful and honest.”

Former SAC Interim Vice President for Academic Success Francisco Solis is interim president at SAC effective immediately. Solis also served as an interim president at SAC from June 2022 to January 2023, when González-De Jesús was appointed president.

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