PHILADELPHIA — The University of Pennsylvania announced Thursday that it will remove casino mogul Steve Wynn’s name from a campus plaza and revoke honorary degrees given to him and comedian Bill Cosby in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against both men.
The school’s president, Dr. Amy Gutmann, and chair of its board of trustees, David Cohen, said in a joint statement that the decision was made after deliberations among deans, faculty, alumni and trustees.
“It is incumbent on all of us to address these issues wherever and whenever we find that they affect our extended community,” they said. Wynn’s name also will be removed from a scholarship fund.
The university said it has been a century since it took away an honorary degree, but “credible” allegations against the men warranted the action.
The Wall Street Journal reported last week that numerous women said they were harassed or assaulted by Wynn, with one case leading to a $7.5-million settlement. Wynn has strongly denied the allegations, attributing them to a campaign led by his ex-wife. He resigned Saturday as finance chairman of the Republican National Committee.
Wynn Resorts spokesman Michael Weaver did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Following the Wall Street Journal report, the University of Iowa also said it would remove Wynn’s name from the school’s vision research institute.
Cosby, who has had honorary degrees stripped by multiple universities, is scheduled to be retried in April on charges that he drugged and molested a woman in 2004. His previous trial ended with a hung jury. His spokesman did not immediately return a voicemail seeking comment.