West Virginia University: Faculty Appointment Letters Compel Speech and Restrict Protected Expression


West Virginia University

Search all Cases

Case Overview

FIRE Victory closed

In 2023, FIRE became aware that recent appointment letters for West Virginia University faculty required them to “accept and encourage change that is for the greater good” and to “avoid conduct that reflects adversely on the image of the University.” On July 27, FIRE wrote WVU urging it to remove this language from appointment letters and to respect faculty’s expressive freedoms, explaining how this unconstitutionally vague and broad requirement violates faculty expressive rights and academic freedom. On November 10, WVU informed us they have clarified to faculty that the provisions at issue are aspirational rather than mandatory.