The Kennedy Hunt, P.C., III has brought an age discrimination suit against Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville for age discrimination under the Age Discrimination Act. The Complaint can be read here. The Complaint alleges that the 49-year-old Plaintiff faced discrimination, which resulted in termination from the University’s Nurse Anesthetist Program based on her age.
Under the Age Discrimination Act, it is illegal to exclude a person based on their age from participating in any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. Colleges and universities, like SIUE, are expressly named as a “program or activity” protected by the Age Discrimination Act.
The Plaintiff was initially rejected from admission into the Nurse Anesthetist Program in 2012. The lawsuit alleges that the Plaintiff was told by various sources familiar with the program, including a current student, that she was rejected from the Program due to her age as she was “too old.”
After admission in 2013, the Plaintiff faced repeated questioning about her age from her clinical placements and received criticism about her academic performance from her instructors, despite receiving a GPA of 3.8 during her first year of coursework and a positive response from supervisors during her first year of clinical rotation.
The Plaintiff was explicitly told by a CNRA who was reviewing her work with the Program that older students, like the Plaintiff, faced much more opposition from the University.
After several years of difficulty and opposition from SIUE, Plaintiff was voted to be terminated from the program in 2015. She now seeks reinstatement into the program.
More on this lawsuit can be read in a recent article published by the Belleville News Democrat, published in the summer of 2017, available to read here.