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Tufts University, Goucher College Revoke Honorary Degrees Given to Cosby

BOSTON ― Two more colleges announced Thursday they have rescinded honorary degrees given to Bill Cosby, adding to a growing list of schools distancing themselves from the entertainer embroiled in allegations of sexual assault.

Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, said it withdrew an honorary doctorate of arts it conferred on Cosby in 2000, along with an award given in 2011 for excellence in children’s media.

Baltimore’s Goucher College, meanwhile, said it decided to revoke an honorary degree it gave to Cosby when he was commencement speaker in 2001.

Both schools said they had notified Cosby of their actions.

Court documents unsealed in July show the 78-year-old Cosby admitting extramarital relationships with several women, some of whom accuse him of sexual assault.

Cosby has never been charged with a crime.

Thursday’s revocations came a day after Pennsylvania’s Lehigh University rescinded an honorary degree given in 2005.

Tufts’ board of trustees said in a statement it decided to withdraw the honor after concluding there was “a substantial basis” to discredit the accomplishments for which Cosby was recognized. The board said it took the step after “lengthy and serious consideration.”

Tufts President Anthony Monaco said in an email to the university community that Cosby has shown “a lack of character and integrity” that does not represent the school’s values.

Goucher President Jose Antonio Bowen said he and the school’s trustees met Wednesday and “unanimously decided that Cosby’s admitted actions are in direct violation of values Goucher holds dear, including our community principles of respect, communication, and responsibility.”

“We must take a consistent stand against sexual misconduct and cannot accept Cosby’s conduct as consistent with our values,” Bowen said.

“Had this information been known at the time, I am confident Goucher would not have awarded this honor,” he said.

Lehigh said earlier this week that Cosby’s admitted behavior was “inconsistent with the character and high standards” expected of honorees.

Several other schools, including Brown, Fordham, Marquette, Baylor and Pennsylvania’s Wilkes University, previously pulled their Cosby degrees. In December, amid widening allegations, Cosby resigned from the board of trustees of Temple University in Philadelphia.

The University of Massachusetts Amherst also has cut ties with Cosby, who earned a master’s degree and a doctorate in education there.

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