Doe v. The University of Texas Health Science Center At San Antonio et al

Western District of Texas, txwd-5:2019-cv-00453


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1 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS SAN ANTONIO DIVISION JANE UTHSCSA-AS DOE § Plaintiff § § vs. § § C.A. No. 5:19-cv-00248-DAE THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS § HEALTH SCIENCE CENTER § AT SAN ANTONIO and § MARCEL NOUJEIM § Defendants ________________________________________________________________________ PLAINTIFF'S RESPONSE TO DEFENDANTS' MOTION TO DISMISS APPENDIX Case 5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document 14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page19 2 of 51 31 JANE DOE APPX 001 JANE DOE APPX 001 Case 5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document 14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page20 3 of 51 31 JANE DOE APPX 002 JANE DOE APPX 002 Case 5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document 14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page21 4 of 51 31 JANE DOE APPX 003 JANE DOE APPX 003 Case 5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document 14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page22 5 of 51 31 JANE DOE APPX 004 JANE DOE APPX 004 Case 5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document 14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page23 6 of 51 31 JANE DOE APPX 005 JANE DOE APPX 005 Case 5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document 14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page24 7 of 51 31 JANE DOE APPX 006 JANE DOE APPX 006 Case 5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document 14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page25 8 of 51 31 JANE DOE APPX 007 JANE DOE APPX 007 Case 5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document 14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page26 9 of 51 31 JANE DOE APPX 008 JANE DOE APPX 008 Case Case5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document Document14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page27 10of of31 51 JANE DOE APPX 009 JANE DOE APPX 009 Case Case5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document Document14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page28 11of of31 51 JANE DOE APPX 010 JANE DOE APPX 010 Case Case5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document Document14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page29 12of of31 51 JANE DOE APPX 011 JANE DOE APPX 011 Case Case5:19-cv-00453-DAE 5:19-cv-00248-DAE Document Document14-1 8-1 Filed Filed08/27/19 09/22/19 Page Page30 13of of31 51 JANE DOE APPX 012 JANE DOE APPX 012 1 JANE DOE APPX 013 CONFIDENTIAL 02/13/2018 Dr. Adriana Segura Professor Associate Dean for Academic, Faculty and Student Affairs School of Dentistry UT Health San Antonio 7703 Floyd Curl Dr., MC 7906 San Antonio, TX 78229-3900 Dear Dr. Adriana Segura, Associate Dean for Student Affairs: This letter is to inform you that I have become the target of discrimination, harassment and mistreatment within the UT Health San Antonio, Department of Comprehensive Dentistry. This letter is a result of a culmination of continued mistreatment in the form of fear, intimidation, favoritism, and retribution that I have been the subject of, most recently during two separate class periods of DIAG 6049 Oral/Max Radiology Interp 2 given by Professor Noujeim. The use of evaluation in class is being used in a retaliatory manner in an effort to justify the now-rebutted dismissal ultimatum I was prematurely given on December 7, 2017 in I was presented with so-called "options" strategically presented in order to achieve the same result: me being expelled from the University. This continued behavior of grading reprisal against me is unwarranted and is being used as coercion to facilitate personal bias against me preventing me from the rightful expectation of a learning environment. From the beginning of the residency, I have been grading well in my courses that involve objective testing. For example, my first term GPA in the fall 2016 was 3.78. However, as I entered the spring semester 2017, I began receiving surprising feedback from one of the professors in my Program, Professor Noujeim. On May 4, 2017, Professor Noujeim called me into his office and presented me with a letter that, in addition to falsely accusing me of missing "a big part of" the Anatomy course last year, stated my knowledge of Head and Neck Anatomy was "still basic" and that I "lacked interest and motivation." This was despite the fact that the prior semester I ultimately received the grade of a "B" in Head and Neck Anatomy after I generated what was deemed an excellent Anatomy presentation for Professor Noujeim. Nevertheless, Professor Noujeim suggested a remediation program that included re-registering in the Head and Neck Anatomy course as well as to prepare certain reports and study guides. Importantly, it should be noted that Professor Noujeim strongly insisted that I resign because if I didn't he would "make the next 6 months a living hell to the point you'll regret staying in this program." Furthermore, after I specifically asked the question, Professor Noujeim assured me I was not being placed on probation and that there would not be any negative implication with respect to my standing as a student in the program. Believing that Professor Noujeim had my interest in heart at the time, I agreed to the program and worked even harder during the semester. At the end of the spring 2017 semester, I received a 3.25 GPA; however, to my surprise, I received incompletes in both Oral/Max Radiology Interpretation 1 and Case Conference (in addition to Advanced Imaging Technology and Research 1 – these two other residents also received). Note that these courses are the only courses that are not graded on written exams but rather on oral and otherwise subjective judgment. Aside from the May 4th meeting, I was unaware and shocked as to 1 why I deserved these extra incompletes since I received little or no negative feedback during the Page Formal Grievance Letter 02/13/18 JANE DOE APPX 013 1 JANE DOE APPX 014 CONFIDENTIAL spring semester of 2017. Nevertheless, the fact that this Interpretation grade was inputted as an "I" on June 1st is a key date as explained as more detail below. As I entered my second year in the Program, it became clear that I had become the subject of the Program Director's targeted harassment and bad faith attempts to preclude my progression as a student. Curiously, Professor Noujeim's promised "monthly evaluations to assess [my] progress" were absent after July 2018. Aside from this lack of support or constructive criticism, his personal conduct toward me showed he was determined to fail me out of the Program by adjusting coursework and exams to my disadvantage. For example, at the outset of Dr. Geha's Radiation Biology course, Dr. Geha informed the students that the final exam would be December 13, 2017. However, 43 days later on December 6, 2017 (after a meeting with Professor Noujeim on December 5, 2017), Dr. Geha notified me that the exam date was being rescheduled to December 14, 2017. Although seemingly subtle, this is another key date as more detailed below. On December 7, 2017, I was surprisingly presented with a letter (dated December 5, 2017) – only the second letter I received from the Program faculty. Despite not-previously being placed on official probation as defined by the Residency Program Manual (which would have nevertheless been unwarranted), this second letter provided me with two options: either withdraw from the Program and leave the University -or- take a not-in-any-published-at-the-time syllabus "FOUR HOUR" "board-style" exam where I must achieve a certain score in order to not be "dismissed from the Program" – the word "dismissed" was repeated at least 10 times during the meeting attending by 4 faculty. It should also be highlighted that this would still result in a grade of "F" in Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology 2 and a completely-unrelated "I" in Graduate OMR Clinic even though Dr. Geha (the main attending faculty of the clinic) described my performance as not having "any problem with it". The date of this "board-style" exam: December 14, 2017. Therefore, if I opted to take the "board-style" exam, I will be unable to sit for my Radiation Biology exam thus resulting in my likely unavoidable failure of this vital course. Note, on the date of this letter being presented to me, my cumulative GPA was 3.68; then, two days later, someone with access to my transcript went and retroactively changed my Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology 1 grade from an "I' to a "C" – a change that lowered by cumulative GPA to 3.61 which was done 191 days after the fact, and once again, without notice. Then, no more than 5 days later, someone with access to my transcript again went and retroactively changed my Case Conference grade from an "I" to a "U" (unsatisfactory). Why does this matter? This means that, 196 days after the fact, Dr. Geha all-of-the sudden came to the conclusion that I was unsatisfactory in Case Presentation from the previous semester. This retroactive and secret determination that I had displayed substandard academic performance is clearly not allowed as per the grading policy of UT Health: "A grade of 'I' is not acceptable as a temporizing measure in situations of substandard academic performance." This brings us to the most recent instances of mistreatment, behavior of which is rooted in favoritism towards those in the Program Director's favor. There is a long pattern of favoritism the Professor Noujeim has displayed in past, but specifically in my class, it's towards a fellow 2nd year co-resident with whom there is an appearance of something peculiar going on known amongst everyone within, and even outside, the program. This special relationship with the Program Director facilitates obvious special exceptions (allowed to leave class early to spend time in his office while the rest of us were in literature review), special treatment (can show up late to class/reports with no repercussions that others would be warned about), and special extra time in his office (before, during, and after normal work hours). This special extra time came as a shock to 1st year residents who constantly asked what is going on with this weird relationship no one else had with the Program Director. Additionally, besides other residents secretly complaining that they rarely can get the Program Director by himself in his office without this other resident being allowed to sit in there, other 2 residents even outside my own residency were noticing the weirdness of how they leave the building Page after hours together. Furthermore, the special treatment afforded to her includes catering to her Formal Grievance Letter 02/13/18 JANE DOE APPX 014 1 JANE DOE APPX 015 CONFIDENTIAL specific requests when it comes to complaints about other residents (Complaints she usually overhears because she's always in his office. However, it should also be pointed out that many complaints go un-reported because other residents are afraid to tell Professor Noujeim about her specifically for fear of reprisal or, even if complaints are lodged against her, Professor Noujeim is hesitant to publically reprimand her behavior like he does others'). Professor Noujeim has showed her favoritism in countless ways not limited to selective invitations to his house for dinner / holidays (while refusing to invite others), shopping together, running errands together, and excessively texting each other. I could elaborate more with details; however, more relevant to the point I'm making is that Professor Noujeim's behavior towards this particular resident has resulted in an environment of accepted fraternization out of fear of bringing it up would result in further reprisal. What kind of reprisal am I speaking about? The most simple example is Professor Noujeim's withholding of a special invitation to un-favored residents he wasn't happy with (via a BCC email to all residents he was happy with at the time) to selectively work "personally" with him to do extra reports. Or what about the fear of reprisal when noticing my initials were secretly written in microscopic font on the back of my supposedly-anonymous evaluations of the faculty. This monumental act of betrayal and breach in confidentiality is why every un-favored resident in our department is afraid to say anything even remotely-critical of the program (there is long history of gossiping amongst faculty and residents, especially if you're deemed a favorite). Moreover, these actions directly contradict the UT Health Responsibilities of the Program Director Policy in that "confidential written evaluations of the faculty and of the educational experiences by the residents" should be facilitated by the Program Director. It should go without saying that this is why resident evaluations in this manner provide no actual feedback to those in or outside the program. Why would residents ever speak the truth when only more fear and retribution is waiting for us? I've seen what happens to residents who speak up: they get verbally yelled at, made fun of, and/or ostracized in various manners. Again, there is no reason why mine or any other resident's name should be attached to these evaluations in a program where confidential information never stays confidential (a problem exacerbated by the favoritism mentioned above). Speaking personally, the breaking of my confidentiality could not have been clearer when, on December 11, 2017, details of my meeting with Dr. Blankmeyer were illegally transmitted to Professor Noujeim by Dr. Glass who admitted to immediately informing him even though 1) Dr. Blankmeyer informed her the information I divulged to Dr. Blankmeyer was meant for her and her alone and 2) Dr. Glass admitted that the contents of my discussion with Dr. Blankmeyer were not under Dr. Glass' jurisdiction. You might be asking, how is this related to favoritism? Within 30 minutes of Dr. Glass' violation of my confidentiality, the aforementioned favorited 2nd year co-resident came to the resident's room and said " just filed a complaint against Professor Noujeim for making fun of her accent and speaking Arabic." As unbelievable as that breach of confidentiality is, how else has favoritism, bias, and reprisals made itself obvious in our program? Take for example my two recent experiences in DIAG 6049 Oral/Max Radiology Interp 2. First, in excruciating detail, we have the favoritism towards my aforementioned 2nd year co-resident: her turn to present comes up and Professor Noujeim makes it a point to pre- emptively tell everyone in attendance multiple time how difficult the case was and how he wrote his own "15 line" long description of it before deleting it multiple times as if to say, if she does poorly, don't blame her (even though almost everyone in the room rightfully thought the lesion was a simple bone dysplasia). During her description, Professor Noujeim allowed for the absurd "mild" definition of expansion (by allowing her to pictorially define "moderate" as one that crosses the midline) to which everyone laughed. Professor Noujeim then said descriptions are "subjective" and then made up a "limited" term to describe the obvious non-mild expansion everyone could see. Professor Noujeim also let his favorite resident pepper her description with "I had a question about this area" when Professor Noujeim never tolerates this sort of indecisive and unprepared behavior from anyone else. At the end of her obvious-to-everyone meandering and confusing description, Professor 3 Noujeim then tried to rush and skip the typical questions-from-residents period as if to hide the fact Page that there were major problems with it (including the "mild" expansion description he would have Formal Grievance Letter 02/13/18 JANE DOE APPX 015 1 JANE DOE APPX 016 CONFIDENTIAL immediately made fun of anyone else about). In fact, another resident had to specifically point out the fact that we weren't being allowed to ask questions before Professor Noujeim reluctantly opened up the discussion to residents. Then, there was a clear typo ("Tomoral") which, in of itself is not a big deal, but Professor Noujeim barely corrected it. However, if it had been anyone else making such a silly typo, he'd make a big deal about it (Professor Noujeim has a long history of making it a point to point out a simple things such as extra spaces between words or making fun of a resident who copy/pasted pictures of some bullet points instead of making her own). Then there is the fact that no one in that room thought "tumoral" should even be on there and yet, instead of scrutinizing her after forcing her to defend it like he would anyone else, he put it to the class to discuss with them (another example of bias by letting her off easy again). Furthermore, Professor Noujeim didn't thoroughly embarrass her for suggesting "biopsy" to differentiate Ossifying Fibroma from Fibrous Dysplasia like he would anyone else for making such a basic mistake (typically, in instances like this, he'll ask the "first years" what they think as if to imply even those new to the program know the answer). Finally, his favorite resident (again, with a PhD in radiology) was allowed to act surprised at the news that requesting additional imaging is a proper answer to how to manage a lesion. This was covered up by Professor Noujeim making excuses that the management is "difficult" because "we don't know…" Compare this to Professor Noujeim's response to my management response within the next hour in which I offered two managements for differently-treated lesions to which he asked numerous follow-up questions he wouldn't dare ask of his favorite resident. With all that said above, the easiest way to reveal favoritism and bias is to compare, yes? Well, on the same day 10 minutes later, it just happened to be my turn. Here's what I had to deal with: Professor Noujeim interrupted me literally 5 seconds into my description by asking about the modality of the image I was describing to which I stated correctly "Panorex" at which point he asked follow-up questions I gave him answers to that another instructor had taught me about previously. Keep in mind, this is a 60 year old machine that no one has used in at least 30 years. Nevertheless, Professor Noujeim made it appear as if I didn't know what I was talking about, so much so in fact, that another faculty present made it a point to tell everyone "class, this is called a Panorex machine" (this was met by a few residents stating that already said that). Unlike his favorite resident, Professor Noujeim had me trace the exact anterior extension of the lesion even though it was obviously ill-defined in that area (which is one of the reasons why I requested a MDCT in my "management" slide later). Unlike his favorite resident, Professor Noujeim attempted to trick me by going into detail about possible periosteal reactions on the periphery of an obvious superimposition that I had already described as not having periosteal reaction. Professor Noujeim also continued to allow his favorite co-resident to physically turn towards Professor Noujeim during my description as if to point out that she recognized something one of them should mention as a critique (it should be pointed out that Professor Noujeim has warned other residents not to turn do so). Professor Noujeim allowed his favorite co-resident to question me to retrace exactly what I was describing as the inferior border of the lesion and mandible (as if she was faculty). Professor Noujeim then, with a straight face, asked ridiculous questions about a 60 year old machine no one uses anymore. These type of questions never get asked of his favorite co-resident. Nonetheless, even though I got the kV and mA questions right, he continued to ask until I couldn't answer which happened to at the point he posed the preposterous question about developer for the film-based images to which the entire class groaned at the absurdity of it all. Professor Noujeim (again, unlike with his favorite resident) told me to justify my reasoning for a "non-odontogenic" impression to which I said one of the reasons being is that the lesion had little effect on mandibular canal despite the large apparent inferior growth in that direction. Of course, Professor Noujeim said that was wrong despite the fact that another faculty (in a previous session) stated has specifically said the exact opposite (again, another attempt to make it appear as if I don't know what I'm talking about in order to justify his poor grading of me…something he never does with his favorite co-resident). As if the bias could not be 4 more clear, Professor Noujeim (after I named "Ameloblastoma" and gave an on-the-spot "Myxoma" as Page two of my differentials) said that day, because he was "…in the mood," he would make Myxoma his Formal Grievance Letter 02/13/18 JANE DOE APPX 016 1 JANE DOE APPX 017 CONFIDENTIAL #1 differential after his favorite co-resident spoke up with her idea that she thought it was a Myxoma. Finally, Professor Noujeim then scrutinized my "management" of the unknown lesion (recall his laissez-faire attitude towards his favorite resident's management) by reading it word-for- word on the PowerPoint and then questioning where I got it from to which I replied White and Pharaoh (an answer he was not happy with despite it being our main textbook). It doesn't end there. Two weeks later, nothing had changed and the torturous bias continued. I was targeted again, this time for nearly 1 hour and 20 minutes, for an intense questioning period no one else ever receives nearly as bad. Almost every resident in last Wednesday's session would attest to the fact that my description was very good. However, Professor Noujeim (and another faculty present) seemed to examine every single word I said under a microscope to the point that residents (and I'm sure those watching on Skype) informed me after-the-fact that they were wondering when it all would all end because the sessions no longer facilitate learning and instead seem like interrogations (I should add that it is very hurtful being on the receiving end of this mistreatment when almost every resident would agree [but are too afraid to speak out] that there are even 3rd year residents who are not performing well but are spared similar behavior from Professor Noujeim). The other faculty member present even made it a point to say "effacement of the follicular sac is evident…which should be in the description" (this is a point never made at any other time in the year and a half that I've been in the program). Furthermore, Professor Noujeim kept trying to force me to use a new-for-everyone viewer instead of my self-prepared PowerPoint when questioning me about my case in an effort to once try to confuse and disorient me. Furthermore, Professor Noujeim again tried to trick me, this time by asking about the "calcifications" next to the tooth on the periphery of the lesion (he was referring to bone but instead of just asking "what is that," he attempted to make it sound like he was defining the bone as "calcifications" to which I questioned him and he modified it to by saying "calcified material"…again, semantics in an attempt to trick me into sounding like I'm worse than I am). No one else gets treated like this (Residents after-the-fact secretly wondered out loud to me that, if he can do this to me, he can do it to them and admitted they themselves could not tolerate such mistreatment. Not coincidentally, Professor Noujeim intimidatingly confronted one of the residents after-the-fact questioning why he heard that resident thought case presentation grading displayed favoritism towards certain residents and against others). This behavior of Professor Noujeim extends to Dr. Geha's case conference where there is an obvious discrepancy in case difficulty for certain residents. I mentioned this discrepancy to Dr. Geha and reminded him that he had previously stated that he judges interpretations and grades them relevant to "people's radiology backgrounds" and yet, on this day and in the past, Dr. Geha agreed that his textbook lesions were assigned to those with more experience (8 years with a PhD or a 3rd year resident with an extra year experience). In other words, the faculty demonstrated their obvious bias (a bias that was proven the week prior when I had gotten a similarly difficult presentation of a lesion from Dr. Geha when compared to the other lesion presented that day). It appears sessions are being manipulated to selectively make certain residents appear to be worse than others and, if by chance that resident performs adequately, faculty either continue asking purposefully-confusing questions or withhold helpful guidance until the target resident performs as designed. This is the definition of confirmation bias and is hardly an environment fostering learning for those receiving this mistreatment and for those witnessing it but too fearful to point it out to those that matter. Clearly, favoritism has played a role in the actions taken against me that, up until now, I have been intimidated and too afraid to say anything for fear of retribution because, even after graduation in this small specialty, careers can be ruined by a powerful person. However, given the information presented above and my experiences in the program (all of which I will gladly supplement with an interview including information on the slandering destruction of personal character, gossiping, using grades to punish, using evaluations to punish, etc.), I strongly believe there is a nefarious reason 5 that I am being pushed out of the University. Professor Noujeim has mistreated me during my Page enrollment in the Program and I believe that he is taking the opportunity to use subjective grading Formal Grievance Letter 02/13/18 JANE DOE APPX 017 1 JANE DOE APPX 018 CONFIDENTIAL in a few of my courses to propel his personal negative views against me. I have informed Dr. Taft of nearly all but the most recent of these academic and non-academic transgressions during the course my current academic appeal with no resulting resolution (in fact, the mistreatment detailed above was seemingly ignored because it was never mentioned again to me). Nevertheless, this is not the only evidence of I have of Professor Noujeim's unprofessional behavior and mistreatment towards me. I have put together a list of comments and actions that Professor Noujeim has taken toward me over the course of the year and a half that I've been a student at UT Health San Antonio (which I have categorized below under the University Student Mistreatment Policy): ▪ "Disparaging or demeaning comments about an individual" o Professor Noujeim has constantly teased me regarding my foreign accent and specifically asked another Iranian resident why my English is not as good as hers. o Professor Noujeim has disclosed and disparaged my academic performance to other residents causing me undo damage to my rightful expectation of confidentiality as well as my self-confidence among my fellow residents and faculty. o Professor Noujeim has made disparaging comments to other residents about the dental school I went to prior to UT Health ▪ "Loss of personal civility including shouting, displaying of temper, public/private abuse, belittling, or humiliation" o After the Trump travel ban was enacted, Professor Noujeim teased the Iranian-American students in the conference room about likely deportations. This was very hurtful in an atmosphere filled with people who were worried about loved ones' VISA status that was threatened. o Numerous times, in front of other residents, Professor Noujeim struck me on the head to belittle me after I said something incorrect (he did this to another Iranian-American resident as well). o Professor Noujeim pounded his fists on the conference room table, raised his voice, and humiliated me in front of all the other residents in response to a question of mine in the "Graduate Retreat" held in fall of 2016. Importantly, despite being proclaimed an "open forum," very few residents spoke out on topics that could be deemed as criticism about the program due to fear of reprisal. o Professor Noujeim, when presenting me a letter on May 5, 2017, said he was going to "make the next 6 months a living hell to the point you'll regret staying in this program." o Professor Noujeim's behavior has fostered an environment where his assistants are allowed to speak and act with disrespect to others (specifically me). o Professor Noujeim and Dr. Geha both continued to speak Arabic in front of me (despite being warned by the Chairman in May of 2017 not to do so anymore when others are around). Additionally, these two routinely texted on their phones and smirk during resident interpretations. Both of these actions made me feel like I was talked about in my presence and showed a lack of civility, was belittling, and adversely affected my self- confidence preventing me from learning comfortably. o On January 8, 2018, Professor Noujeim displayed a temper during his proctoring of his CT exam (described below) with an aggressive tone and demeanor. 6 Page Formal Grievance Letter 02/13/18 JANE DOE APPX 018 1 JANE DOE APPX 019 CONFIDENTIAL ▪ "Use of grading or other forms of evaluation in a punitive or retaliatory manner" o On December 5, 2017, Professor Noujeim likely directed Dr. Geha to intentionally move his Radiation Biology exam to December 14, 2017 (an exam that had been schedule for 43 prior days) to coincide with the day of an unprecedented and non-standardized "board style" exam (scheduled the day prior for December 14th) that no other resident in the history of the program has had to pass and one theoretically held in such a way that is only relevant to part 2 boards (which are over two years away). Moreover, even if I were to pass it, the threat was made that I would be arbitrarily assigned an "I" grade in Graduate OMR Clinic and an "F" in Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology Interpretation. o On December 7, 2017, Professor Noujeim with no warning presenting the 2nd letter (dated December 5, 2017) informing me of my pending dismissal from the school just before final exams and thus denying me right to a probationary period. o Professor Noujeim directing the assignment of an "F" grade for DIAG 6007 Graduate OMR Clinic and "U" grades for both DIAG 6018 OMR Case Conference and DIAG 6049 Oral/Max Radiology Interp 2, all of which despite objective evidence proving the grade was indefensible in light of the obvious bias and over scrutinization detailed above. o Professor Noujeim forced other residents to take some exams in December without me despite Dr. Segura's advice that they indeed had the option to take their exams with me in January (importantly, other faculty agreed there is inherent unfairness that is hard to suppress if exams are taken at separate times) o Professor Noujeim twice refused my simple accommodation request in January to replicate the same testing environment as was allotted for those who were forced to take the exams in December. This prevented similar allotted study time for the Radiation Biology midterm. o Professor Noujeim both aggressive designed and proctored his CT exam in January. His tone and angry demeanor when stating "18 multiple choice, 1 short answer and you will drop your pens at 22 minutes" was undeniable. Then, once completing the exam, it was obvious the vast amount of the material tested was nowhere to be found in his CT PowerPoint. It goes without saying that this test, both in content and method of proctoring, was designed to be nefariously difficult given that 1) this was the first time in at least the last few years a CT exam was ever given 2) he gave a separately-timed exam to his favorite 2nd year co-resident and 3) he announced this exam on the last day of class having never given us a syllabus which is in direct violation of the Syllabus Policy. o Professor Noujeim directing the secret marking of resident evaluations of faculty/classes (use of very small resident initials on the back of supposedly "anonymous" evaluations) in clear violation of the Program Director Responsibilities. o Professor Noujeim secretly emailed favorited residents to "personally" work with him to do extra reports I am stuck in a very difficult position where I am being forced out of a Program that I am passionate about and that I have worked hard to complete to the best of my ability. Unfortunately, I am saddened by the fact that, prior to the shock of the December 7th dismissal threat and like my experiences in other Universities, I had built a good relationship with UT Health's radiology faculty (always polite with them, never had disagreements with or negative feedback from them, and they too returned positive behavior towards me). However, because UT Health's faculty were purposely left in the dark about Professor Noujeim's mistreatment towards me (their ignorance to this fact was facilitated by Professor Noujiem's repeated demands and threats ["swear to god if you go to faculty…"] towards me that I do not speak to other faculty about these matters from May 4 th until now), I do not believe that I am being judged on my merits but rather the personal bias toward me 7 due to the one-sided influence of Professor Noujeim. Where is my evidence? After I was threatened Page with dismissal at the December 7th meeting, faculty revealed to me there were many details and Formal Grievance Letter 02/13/18 JANE DOE APPX 019 1 JANE DOE APPX 020 CONFIDENTIAL basic facts they were unaware of until I spoke with them. I should add that there are many other stories directly related to my situation that I cannot reveal without revealing the identity of the resident who is afraid for their own safety in this program due to threats made towards them. Nevertheless, the energy, time, and sacrifice spent defending myself against this mistreatment has gone up exponentially. This is time and energy that could be better used for focusing on radiology thus I am sincerely asking for your assistance in helping me resolve this matter. At this point, I have no one else to turn to and will risk further reprisal just to make this mistreatment stop to guarantee the same rights as other residents: a peaceful environment that facilitates learning. Sincerely, 8 Page Formal Grievance Letter 02/13/18 JANE DOE APPX 020 1 JANE DOE APPX 021 THECB COMPLAINT ADDENDUM NO. 5 Full Complaint Description I am a second year residency student of the Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology Program [OMFR] at University of Texas Health San Antonio. Ever since the start of my second year residency at the UTHSA Department, I have been subject to a number of prejudicial treatment. The primary perpetrator of the prejudicial treatment is Dr. Marcel Noujeim [ Dr. Noujeim ] who happens to be the Program Director of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology Program [OMFR]. I was admitted the OMFR program in the Spring of 2016. I began my first year residency in earnest and at the end of the first year residency, I had a 3.78 Grade Point Average. Just as I was getting used to the American system of education and consolidating on the academic gains I achieved in the first semester, Dr. Noujeim's prejudicial treatment against me began. This prejudicial treatment that started since 2017 continues to this day. I have met with numerous faculty to address the situation but they instead tossed me from one level to another, from one faculty member to another without resolve. There is now a successful smear campaign against me, initiated by Dr. Noujeim. Dr. Noujeim is stacking up reasons to dismiss me from the program. Below are some of the unfortunate events that have occurred: On May 4, 2017, I was called into Dr. Noujeim's office and was presented with a letter dated May 5, 2017 [ "May 2017 Letter"]. Letter is herein attached., Dr. Noujeim expressed displeasure with my performance and coerced me to sign the letter. The Letter contained numerous falsities against me and painted me as a student with a "basic understanding" of head and neck courses. The May 2017 Letter went beyond personal critiques and falsely alleged that I was "not able to finish more that 2-3 regular cases during a 3-4 hours session". Notwithstanding my disagreement with the assertions in the letter, I was coerced to sign it. According to Dr. Noujeim, failure to sign the letter 1 THECB Complaint Addendum JANE DOE APPX 021 1 JANE DOE APPX 022 would be interpreted as an indication of my desire to resign from the program. Upon signing the letter, Dr. Noujeim stated that he would make my residency "hell" and that "I'd regret staying". Regardless, I signed the letter and moved on. From that date onward, Dr. Noujeim made good on his promise and has made my life at the program a living hell. The May 2017 Letter stipulated many conditions, most importantly, that [I] will be continuously evaluated during clinic, reports and interpretation sessions". Determined to succeed, I completed all the remediation steps that Dr. Noujeim laid out in the May 2017 letter (taking anatomy course again, making slide presentation after report sessions, doing more reports, etc.). Sometime in July 2017, Dr. Noujeim stopped giving me "monthly" evaluations as required by the May 2017 letter thereby reneging on the signed May 2017 agreement between him and I. This led me to believe that he considered me fully remediated since I had done quite well proving myself. Furthermore, he never mentioned the whole process again which seemed to reflect his reneging of the terms of our contract and an implication that I was back in good stead with him. However, on December 7, 2017, Dr. Noujeim summoned me for yet another meeting. Present at this meeting were – Drs. Noujeim, Geha, Katkar and Deahl [ "Committee"]. Once again, various false allegations were thrown at me. I felt ambushed as I had no idea that the faculty had this much disdain for me and were grossly dissatisfied with my academic performance. In a pattern similar to the May 2017 meeting, Dr. Noujeim handed me yet another letter [ "December 2017 Letter'] and stated that "we have decided to dismiss you… it is done…. decision is made, and you cannot do anything… don't talk to faculty at all…". As is natural in circumstances where one feels ambushed, I began to inquire of the panel, reasons for my purported dismissal. One of the panelists, Dr. Geha in response to my questions, said "nothing is wrong with my performance and I am fine with it, your "clinics were good", "I had no problems with my scans", "your interactions with patients were good and that your reports were all good". The Dec 2017 Letter was written in to generate fear and to coerce me to withdraw from the program. Per the Dec 2017 Letter, If I chose to stay in the program I was expected to take a 4 Hour Exam to prove competency [ "4 Hour Competency Exam"] . If I were pass this exam, I would be allowed to remain in the program albeit in probationary status, yet would receive an Incomplete/ "I" grade in some courses. As I pressed the Committee further, it became apparent that they believed, albeit falsely that I was a student under academic probation and incapable of 2 THECB Complaint Addendum JANE DOE APPX 022 1 JANE DOE APPX 023 remediation. In pushing to dismiss me, Dr. Noujeim made it clear that he didn't care about my progress and successful completion of his supposed remediation steps outlined in the May 2017 Letter but instead thought "in general" I was not at the level [ Dr. Noujeim's subjective opinion] to be in the program. When I retorted that I was indeed at the same level of other students, Dr. Noujeim said that I was not allowed to compare myself to other students and instead I should consider myself as a solo resident. In summary, it was only at this point on December 7th that I was made aware that I was not doing well enough to stay in the program even though all other classes, grades, and number reports showed I was in good academic standing. At this meeting, Dr. Noujeim once again threatened me with academic dismissal and stated that I would remain on academic probation if I failed to improve. It is important to note that I was never placed on academic probation to begin with. I never received a probation letter nor did anyone express to me that I had been placed on academic probation. There is undeniable proof that Dr. Noujeim made these threats to me calculated to create a hostile learning environment for me, such that I would simply give up and withdraw from the program. Dr. Noujeim continues to make unfathomable amount of policy violations while being personally reckless and discriminatory towards me. In implementing his threat of making my life a living hell in the program, Dr. Noujeim he has engaged in the following unprofessional acts towards me. • Unfair grading including retroactive grade reduction in a number of my Spring and Fall 2017 courses. I have appealed the retroactive grade reduction and changes without any resolve. • Dr Noujeim has over the course of my year at the OMFR program engaged in verbally abusive behavior towards me. • Dr. Noujeim has openly made fun of my accent in the presence of the other students and has often asked a fellow Iranian student, why that student spoke better English than me. • Dr. Noujeim engaged in the violation of Student privacy rules by sharing my academic performance and specific grades with students in the department. • Dr. Noujeim has abused powers vested in his office by manipulating exam and tests schedules to ensure that I had little chance at succeeding in those tests. 3 THECB Complaint Addendum JANE DOE APPX 023 1 JANE DOE APPX 024 • Dr. Noujeim engages in blatant acts of favoritism towards particular students and treats the rest of us, me included with disdain. For example, in 2017, Dr. Noujeim denied my request for vacation but granted the summer vacation request of his favorite student. In furtherance of his favoritism, Dr. Noujeim manipulated clinic schedules such that my clinic schedule was several times more challenging than his favored student. There are several other blatant acts of favoritism that has occurred over the past year. • Dr. Noujeim has created and continues to perpetuate a hostile learning environment at the OMFR department such that all the students are afraid to stand up to make any complaints for fear of reprisals. There have been numerous injustices that have occurred and continue to occur in the program, too numerous to condense in this complaint. I and other students have complained but nothing has changed. I am currently on the brink of being dismissed from the OMFR program because of the numerous injustices that have gone unchecked. The Vice President has recently called for an investigation to examine the toxic climate in my residency, but the results cannot be objective as Dr. Noujeim yields unbelievable influence over the department. Dr. Noujeim is the program director, He created this unbelievable toxic learning environment and all students are fearful of him. The OMFR program allowed Dr. Noujeim to use grading and other evaluative processes in a punitive or retaliatory manner against me. This was in direct contravention of the OMFR policy. This has gone unchecked for far too long. Under Dr. Noujeim's leadership, I have been discriminated against, harassed and mistreated by none other than Dr. Noujeim. His use of disparaging and demeaning comments against me are unacceptable. No student should be subject to the treatment that I have endured under Dr. Noujeim's leadership. In summary, under Dr. Noujeim's leadership, the following laws, regulations and policies have been routinely flouted: • The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 • Public Access to Course Information Web Site Texas State Law (HB2504) • UT Health Syllabus Policy • UT Health General Grading Policy • UT Health Student Mistreatment Policy • UT Health Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology Residency Program Manual 4 THECB Complaint Addendum JANE DOE APPX 024 1 JANE DOE APPX 025 • UT Health MSDS Program Manual for Students, Faculty, and Administration • UT Health Responsibilities of the Program Director. NO.6 Resolution Sought • I want to be able to finish the program without any fear of reprisal. I have invested a great deal of time, money and personal sacrifice to be a student of this program and it would be great injustice to dismiss me due to the Dr. Noujeim's illegitimate actions. • I want to complete the program and be given the same opportunities that is given to my fellow residents. • I want to put an end to the bullying and prejudicial treatment I have had to endure since Dr. Noujeim's threat of making my life a "living hell". I would be happy to provide documentary evidence as needed. Sincerely, 5 THECB Complaint Addendum JANE DOE APPX 025 1 JANE DOE APPX 026 Dear Dr. Mok, Please allow me to express my concerns with regards to my interactions with professors and faculty. This journey of appeals has caused significant stress and negative effects on my mental health. I have pursued counseling support and medication management for the anxiety and depression resulting from this oppressing situation. My experience as a student has been fraught with negativity and my efforts to try to resolve the issue have only resulted in further negative experiences. I want to hold on to hope and it is my desire to share this experience with you in efforts to rectify the situation. First, I have made efforts to contest grades by formally rebutting and addressing concerns with faculty. I attempted this in person and via letters. As I expected, Dr. Dodge did not change my grades exactly as he told Dr. Taft he would do before Dr. Taft gave me his same decision. However, Dr. Dodge did give me a letter that I had some disagreement with to which I emailed him my rebuttal even though he said the decision was "final." I should add that Dr. Segura was in the last meeting with Dr. Dodge and informed me that it was "up to Dr. Noujeim to either dismiss me or put me on probation." This is disconcerting to me as he is the professor I have been mistreated by meaning it is an obvious conflict of interest. Dr. Segura also told me since I have 3 credit hours of F and 2 (U)'s they can dismiss me to which I had to inform her and Dr. Dodge that in fact the Policy stated that a student can only be dismissed after 4 Fs or Ds; in other words, nothing in the Policy is mentioned about (U) grades coming with dismissal meaning as of right now, I only have 3 credit hours of F from an unfair clinic grade I have provided counter-substantiation to and all faculty and everyone in the appeals process has failed to do. I am concerned that neither Dr. Noujeim nor Dr. Segura are following the policies, so how can I be assured of an objective and fair process in this matter when they are not following their own policy and rules? I feel like my concerns and the evidence I have are not being objectively considered; I feel I am being treated unfairly. Second, and most pressingly, once again us residents are dealing with another policy violation: a course that we registered for last semester, but Dr. Noujeim didn't start until November. We would ask Dr. Noujeim about starting the class and he would always say not to worry that he would finish the class on time. We had Wednesday afternoons free for months since he did not begin lectures until November which only gave us one month of class before December break. As a result, Dr. Noujeim was not able to finish the course and we had another (I) in our transcript. This semester we continued the lectures and for the first time on the last session of the lecture he announced an exam that we are scheduled to take tomorrow, March 28, 2018. No previous class had an exam, so why mine? Also, we did not have a syllabus for the first half of the class. When we finally received a syllabus, it said we would have a midterm and a final with no indication it would be cumulative. This is a pattern for him because he did the same thing for our CT. It is very frustrating because even though we mentioned it numerous times in our emails and even a letter to Dr. Segura, it seems that no one informed him that it is against the Syllabus Policy. I reviewed the policy and found out that not having a syllabus is a big academic issue (given to students 5 months after the course started), putting (I) without a valid reason (he did not start the course on JANE DOE APPX 026 1 JANE DOE APPX 027 time is not valid) is another issue, and not even following the existing after-the-fact syllabus. These things have negatively affected me psychologically while forcing us to take a surprise cumulative final exam which is comprised of 900 slides instead of dividing them between two exams. I think I am being set up for failure and, even if the exam score is invalidated retroactively once it's proven that the exam was given in violation of the Syllabus Policy and contrary to every other class' experience in the history of the program, this is frustrating because it's completely preventable and artificially puts me at a disadvantage when it comes to convincing the other Program directors in the probation hearing that I am not a below-average student as falsely-accused since all my other non-biased and provable grades are A's and B's. Unfortunately, I suspect that all these changes are being made to set me up for failure so that they can dismiss me as they have wanted to do for some time (made clear verbally and in writing in the December 7th meeting). Another example of this is that in-department potential research committee members refused my invitation and now, thanks to Dr. Deahl, I have 3 committee members from outside the program. Nevertheless, it feels like everyone else is not helping me or hearing me, that decisions are made without reviewing the facts or policies, and that decisions are based solely on the word of a powerful professor. I am just asking for fairness and to be shown evidence for my grades. I just want to be given an opportunity to learn in an environment that is conducive to learning. I am asking that if there are areas of improvement then give me concrete feedback so that I can learn and improve in those areas. This entire situation has made me very anxious and extremely tired. Things are getting intolerable. I even spent the 5 days of spring break ineffectively studying while dying inside from stress and anxiety. How much more pain do I have to endure before being treated without bias? Please help us in this matter Dr. Mok, since I don't know anyone else in this school to go to and ask for justice. Please see the attached email sent to Dr. Dodge last night as well as his letter for your reference. Best regards, JANE DOE APPX 027 1 JANE DOE APPX 028 JANE DOE APPX 028 1 JANE DOE APPX 029 Dear Dr. Seitz and Mrs. Sosa, Thank you for your email which I appreciate but it does not provide clarity given that I assume by "grading policies" you mean the academic aspect of my grievance which leads me to some serious concerns. To be frank, I was surprised by your email since during the four sessions I sat down with you and tried to explain anything related to academics, you'd consistently reiterated to me that your job was just to investigate the "climate" and that my academic claim was "completely different." I was flabbergasted every time you said this to me and would then spend an inordinate amount of time re- explaining why Dr. Mok and I agreed that these two subjects are inseparable. Since per your email this investigation includes academics, I find it only necessary to recap that I was able to only give you a few specific examples of how academic was related to non-academic (there are countless examples I can't possibly mention all of them in this lone email) such as the now-infamous blind-CC email that excluded residents Dr. Noujeim "wasn't good with" and all the numerous instances of bias during Wednesday sessions (as detailed in the FERPA violation posting of our grades). Additionally, as you may recall, I had to specifically bring up the bullet point in the mistreatment policy multiple times as it relates the use of grading or other forms of evaluation in a punitive or retaliatory manner. After explaining myself with specific examples you strongly agreed that indeed that my academic grievance was directly related to the non-academic mistreatment I was suffering from; and yet, the agreement was short-lived because without fail the next session would start with a reversal of your stance by again trying to separate academic from non-academic issues. It appeared that all the facts and substantiation I was bringing to you was being forgotten and/or discounted which would result in me having to re-establish what we already agreed to in the previous session. One time you so adamantly agreed that academic and non- academic were indisputably intertwined that there was no way Dr. Dodge can could possibly make his "final decision" without getting the full report from this investigation. You see where I'm going with this? Something doesn't add up: why the blatant rush to make a "final decision" without all the facts if indeed academic is not inseparable from non-academic? What makes this so frustrating is that I have so much documentation and evidence proving my academics are nowhere even close to dismissal level and yet I never was allowed to adequately share it with you (since I had to keep re-explaining why academic and non-academic are inseparable). More importantly, I know for a fact that you residents were not asked by you to confirm or deny my academic claims. How can you it now be claimed academics were considered in the investigation you already stated was finished? This saddens me because my main point of writing my grievance under the mistreatment policy was to address the clear academic bias against me. Parallel to this was the Vice President's call for an investigation to examine the toxic climate in my residency (after hours and hours of testimony from the bulk of the residents). In other words, why would I want you to investigate the exact same thing given that I'm still sitting here able to prove I was at the academic level of my peers at the time the bias and discrimination was shown (with undeserving grades no faculty can support even now) but to which I can easily refute with abundant substantiation – all of which have been ignored by Dr. Noujeim, Dr. Taft, Dr. Segura, and Dr. Dodge. Please put yourself in my shoes and what I've been through: for the past four months I've had to go door-to-door, meeting after meeting, bringing piles of evidence defending myself and having to explain all the policy violation to the people who are supposed to know them better than me! And, even after I JANE DOE APPX 029 1 JANE DOE APPX 030 make my case and point out the numerous policy infractions, it doesn't seem to matter and I'm left being told I'm not being ignored while at the same time being given vague justifications for the school's position without any supporting evidence to even come close to refuting my claim in an effort to support faculty at all cost even if it means the integrity of the process is shattered. Would you stand this injustice? The purpose of the investigation is to seek the truth, is it not? I'm exhausted and have reached the point of realizing that the people responsible for my future are willfully avoiding the truth because to accept it means there will have to be a lot of questions answered as to why I wasn't listened to sooner. The reality is, this is a giant part of my claim: everywhere I turn, there is undeniable proof that my program director has made (and continues to make) an unfathomable amount of policy violations while being personally reckless and discriminatory towards me. My understanding is that the investigation is to be impartial and conducted with people from outside the school and yet somehow all evidence in front of me suggests the investigators are directly under the supervision of Dr. Segura. Is this not a glaring conflict of interest? Nevertheless, it appears that those around him continue to support him because to accept otherwise would implicate them as well. Who is responsible for my wasted time, energy, and, most importantly, mental health which is continually disintegrating for the past four months? Am I not still a resident and student who needs time to study? Am I not still a resident and student who needs accommodations to ensure no further damage is done to my transcript to safeguard myself from Dr. Noujeim's mistreatment and bias that, if left unchecked, becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy? Does anyone in this school even think how is it that this supposedly "weak" (according to Dr. Noujeim) student is managing to attend all these meetings and write all these letters while also studying with anxiety because, unlike her peers, if she makes any sort of mistake it will be highlighted while her peers' mistakes are diminished and forgotten? Even if I was a robot and emotionless, it'd be hard to manage and yet, here I am faced with the reality of no one really wanting to help me in this process. I feel like this whole process that I am supposed to trust was all a formality because the overwhelming facts I tried to present didn't require deep thinking to understand and yet I'm in the same spot I was 4 months ago despite providing undeniable evidence, meticulous documentation, and copy/pasted links to countless policies violated by the program everyone is rushing to defend. A small snippet of the violated policies UT Health is condoning by continuing to support the opinion of the persons responsible for the bias and mistreatment against me: • The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 • Public Access to Course Information Web Site Texas State Law (HB2504) • UT Health Syllabus Policy • UT Health General Grading Policy • UT Health Student Mistreatment Policy • UT Health Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology Residency Program Manual • UT Health MSDS Program Manual for Students, Faculty, and Administration • UT Health Responsibilities of the Program Director Numerous infractions and almost nothing from anyone. Deafening silence in fact. In conclusion, while I appreciate you noting that your investigation includes "grading policies" (academic issues), it is troublesome to me and I hope you can understand why: I was never truly given the JANE DOE APPX 030 1 JANE DOE APPX 031 opportunity to adequately voice my academic concerns that you stated multiple times were "completely different" from what you were investigating. Thus, I don't consider my original intent for filing my grievance adequately addressed by this investigation. Furthermore, since these details weren't even mentioned to the residents to allow for corroboration of my claims, I don't know how a proper conclusion can be made. Thank you for your time and understanding. Best regards, JANE DOE APPX 031 1 JANE DOE APPX 032 Dear Drs. Mok and Segura, I still have some unresolved concerns despite attempting to help heal this program via the following actions: signing your remediation plans, accepting double the workload to complete said plans, and choosing for now not to continue the appeal process of the investigation. I do not feel like the investigation directly addressed my concerns. In fact, I have an abundance of documents and evidence that show that the investigation did not properly examine my claims of bias. Furthermore, I found out from multiple sources that they were never asked about academic bias. Also, the dental school administration declined to speak to me about the bias on multiple occasions which makes them not finding any "evidence" not surprising. I find this heartbreaking because I expected UT Health faculty to act professionally and in good faith, especially given the time and energy I spent concisely presenting the overwhelming detailed evidence. Unfortunately, the lack of professionalism by UT Health faculty has continued in the form of incorrectly grading my exams. I have proof of this claim which I would be willing to share. This makes me wonder the following: if UT Health faculty behave in a biased and unprofessional manner on objective written exams, how can I trust them on subjective courses and/or the evaluations of my progress? Sadly, I cannot. Thus, I request you address the aforementioned concerns listed in detail below: 1. Cumulative "C" grade for Spring 2018 Graduate OMR Clinic (DIAG 6007) I am concerned that my grades were submitted late and I lost my financial aid. There were inconsistencies with my grades. As I did not have any errors in clinic, late reports or any mistakes, it was disconcerting that I received an "F." When I asked Dr. Katkar what my grade was, she conveyed to me it was grade of 2.4 while noting that 2.5 is a "B." It is concerning to me that my grades went from a "B" in the first course to an "F" and now a "C." I am concerned that I have approached faculty for feedback but have not been given clarity or access to my grades which would help give me better guidance to help me grow. 2. My Spring 2018 evaluation The comments on my evaluation appear to be biased. I would prefer constructive feedback. I was also concerned about my evaluation which reflected a number of skills as "not seen." I would appreciate the opportunity to demonstrate those skills and be evaluated and given constructive feedback. 3. The 2018 ABOMR part 1 board exam The Board committee is not approving me to take the board because of the grades on my transcript. I was given mixed messages about having an "IP" in my transcript. I feel that the dental school did not support me in this process. I am concerned that the faculty did not provide me with a remediation process that allowed me sufficient time to sit for part 1 JANE DOE APPX 032 1 JANE DOE APPX 033 boards in 2018 while at the same time the same faculty made numerous accommodations for another resident to take numerous non-radiology boards. Given the above unresolved concerns of my situation, I feel that the faculty and administration in the Dental School have not been advocating for me. Thus, I am requesting a meeting with both of you to discuss these matters as soon as possible since unfortunately time is not in my side. Best regards, JANE DOE APPX 033 1 JANE DOE APPX 034 Update: After meeting with Dr Taft (chairman) he met with faculty and then he met with me again and he said after listening to them he decided to stand with their decision which is not changing our grades. I met with Dr. Mok (vice president) and she told me that if I think my grades were biased then when I am meeting with Dr Dodge (Dean of the dental school) I can give him the non academic mis- treatement grievance. I still cant believe how Dr Taft really ignore every things that they did wrong. What is the punishment for that academic errors that they put us "I" from the beginning, they changed it to "U" and they didn't inform us, they lied about evaluation confidentiality and put our initial secretly under each pages, ninette (assistant) behavior with us and with Josh who support us in some level in this mess that they create(she told him idiot) and what about emailing all residents and not just me and nada and Josh!!later dr noujeim told Sean that he was upset at Josh and that's why he didn't send it to him!! Dr Mok noticed from all we say(6 residents and 1 anonymous email) that what he is doing its like a pattern of each year just because of Dr Demirturk this year was worse! The questions that Dr Mok was asking from all the residents hoswed she is aware there are some serious things are going on and she thinks the best way is bring him down from the power and she was concern and sad that no one else is available for this position now. But its not our fault that there is no one else, he cant just does whatever he wants with our future and present and .. because there is no one!! Dr Mok decided to gives him a non academic misconduct grievance on behalf of residents without mentioning the stories and the name of the residents because some of them talks about the things that they didn't even tell me before for example lea told me that day that she was talking about the schedule with him, he told lea in Arabic that he noticed the finger print of Josh in our process means he found out Josh supported us indirectly and he will CUT THAT FINGER, cant believe they are letting a dangerous sick person like him with so many mistakes just continue to does whatever he wants, anyway the same day that she gave the letter to Dr segura to gave it to dr noujeim I had another horrible wed session full of stress and more than an hour of interrogation, although there were 3 cases left from previous series and in the new series I presented my cases recently, in my surprised he asked me to present again, my two knees were shaking and he after my presentation he started asking none sense questions like the other time, putting trap for me by asking question like " what is this calcification is?" while that wasn't even a calcification!!!!thousands of time asking me what did you say about the borders and .. then 10 times asking everyone if they have a question which no one asked rather than dr katkar with a very bad attitude and it wasn't a question it was negative comment and she was just looking at dr noujeim and not me, dr noujeim even asked me the questions like what is your reason that this is cyst or tomur and I was answering 2-3 reasons for it and he was saying after that sean with a question confirmed that my differential diagnosis was right, I don't know what is his problem that he doesn't want to accept my report my description and … its good and he is just trying to show it like this. I took 6 patients yesterday in clinic and did their reports without faculty even involve in it and then they gave me F. in break after my presentation again residents came to me and feel sad for me that should sit there and answer his discriminatory questions and also told me that how pefect I present and managed his questions and how they wouldn't be able to tolerate this much and for sure they would say something, sean told me "no matter how much you be perfect, he does what he wants to prove, then be yourself and not even bother yourself this much" sean went after me for presentation and although we had time extra 10 min Dr noujeim finished his case in 15 min and didn't ask a single question and said something like it wasn't the classic presentation!!!!!! Like that he grade me poorly and others high!!! And even after that in Dr Geha class, husniye had a case which was the text book case of ossifying fibroma, super clear pano and clear lesion and everything about it was screamed and typical OF and then nada case after that the same lesion and completely atypical everything!!!! Exactly like my case previous week!! I told Dr Geha later that every resident notice that your cases are in different level of difficulty and its happened that your easy cases goes to someone lie syamken third year and even that he cant describe well or to someone with 8 years background of radiology like husniye and then JANE DOE APPX 034 1 JANE DOE APPX 035 the hard one goes to me and nada! He told me that he is satisfy with my description and I was recording his voice!!!!! My case with Dr geha was so hard the week before that Ahmed(first year residents who was a radiology faculty in Saudi) told reyaheh(3rd year resident) that he could never guess what is my case and he would send it immediately for taking CBCT, the same person told lea (chief resident) that he is tired of wed session and he hates husniye behavior towards her classmates and and the way she looked at dr noujeim when someone is presenting means that person had errors or.. and he also add every one of us could be in Arezou's place and this is not correct. Lea transferred this message to Dr noujeim the next day that they were arguing about the schedule and he first lied to lea that he didn't change the schedule at all and when it comes with all changes he slandered lea that she put the schedule in and josh benefit and his reason was because in 52 session and 3 months we were 15 times together and after lea mentioned 4 times surprisingly that 15 times in 3 months its not weired at all and explained that actually it was husniye that makes the schedule difficult for lea because she is not good with anyone and … he accepted that he got lea's impression wrong and he apologized!!! But in the same meeting lea talked to him about wed session and the fact that before it was more useful and they went through 4-5 cases and now just 1-2 and the way dr noujeim ignore all husniye mistakes and he explained because she was a alone child and he is sad for him and when lea told him that husniye behavior is very bad with other residents around her, he started bringing excuse that since she was the only child she doesn't know how to react with others, and he said the reason he didn't corrected him on the mistakes was because other residents laughed at her when she was showing the Moderate expansion and so many non sense things for defending husniye. Ahmed the first year residents who talked to lea about my wed session and with reyhaneh about my Dr geha's case, recently is changing his opinion about wed session because Dr noujeim reached him and told him that he heard (he heard it from lea when she was trying to tell noujeim everyone realized what he did) he is not happy the way of wed session and if he thinks dr noujeim sometimes let some residents get away from things and some residents don't!!! and poor guy scared and said: not at all dr noujeim I like wed session and I liked you and ….. Ahmed is a good guy but he is getting special treatment also, although he was a radiology assistant faculty in Saudi arabia, sometimes he came late to report, he missed classes and he is not doing that much report, but dr noujeim NEVER saying anything bad to him and even always show satisfaction. Recently I heard that most of the Iranian in the whole school know about what is happening in our program and to me and mory (both Iranian) and they think we did something that's why the program may not accpt Iranian for the following semester anymore. Reyahaneh (another Iranian in 3rd year)found out that an Iranian doctore (Dr. moshtagh farokhi) close friend of Dr segura(associate dean) talked about our stuff to other residents especially the one who was applying fot the program. JANE DOE APPX 035 1 JANE DOE APPX 036 JANE DOE APPX 036 1 JANE DOE APPX 037 B. SUBJECT MATTER JURISDICTION, VENUE, & RELIEF SOUGHT 2. This Court has jurisdiction over the following matter because this is a civil action, and this Court has jurisdiction over Defendant with regard to Plaintiff's request for damages. 3. Venue is appropriate in Bexar County, Texas because it is the domicile of Defendant and the County where the underlying issues continue to occur. 4. In accordance with Rule 47 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure, Plaintiff hereby announces that Plaintiff seeks damages of over $ 1,000,000.00. C. PARTIES AND SERVICE 5. Plaintiff "MARY UTHSCSA-MP DOE" ("MaryD") is an individual residing in the State of Texas. Because of the privacy issues involved in this matter, MaryD is hereby exercising her rights to proceed with this matter anonymously. 6. The need to protect the identity of Plaintiff MaryD does not hinder the defense of this matter by Defendant, for the facts are well known to the Defendant. When applying the applicable tests (created by Texas jurisprudence) to balance the needed protection of privacy versus any inconvenience to the Defendant, the protection of MaryD's privacy prevails. 2 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 037 1 JANE DOE APPX 038 7. At such time as the Court might agree on procedures designed to protect the privacy of Plaintiff MaryD, MaryD's identity shall be disclosed. 8. Defendant THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS HEALTH SCIENCE CENTER AT SAN ANTONIO ("UTHSCSA") is a public university operating in the State of Texas and may be served with citation by serving the President as follows: The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio c/o William L. Henrich M.D., President 7703 Floyd Curl Drive San Antonio, Texas 78229-3900 D. GENERAL BACKGROUND 9. Plaintiff MaryD is a highly educated and well respected medical professional attending graduate school, as an international student, in the State of Texas at Defendant UTHSCSA. 10. For reasons that can only be attributed to her ethnicity, national origin, gender, and disabilities, Plaintiff MaryD has suffered under a "Reign of Terror" (defined hereafter) organized, authorized, and implemented by various agents and administrators employed by Defendant UTHSCSA. Further, the Board of Regents for Defendant UTHSCSA has condoned such Reign of Terror. 11. Examples of the harassment, retaliation, and discrimination suffered by Plaintiff MaryD include but are in no manner limited to the following: 3 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 038 1 JANE DOE APPX 039 (a) physical assault against Plaintiff MaryD, including but not limited to an administrator of Defendant grabbing MaryD and forcibly placing her in a chair; (b) unlawful restraint by locking Plaintiff MaryD inside an office with her aggressor and refusing to allow her to leave; (b) the stalking of Plaintiff MaryD, including but not limited to endless inappropriate emails, text messages and telephone calls; (c) racial insults directed to Plaintiff MaryD, including but not being limited to negative comments about Plaintiff's race and national origin; (d) the sexual harassment of Plaintiff MaryD, including but not limited to unprofessional text messages requesting personal photographs, inappropriate text messages and emails containing music with graphic lyrics of a sexual nature, unprofessional and inappropriate telephone calls wherein an official and agent of Defendant UTHSCSA expressed his "love" for MaryD, unwanted and inappropriate physical touching, inappropriate and unprofessional comments about MaryD's physical appearance, and being told by an official and agent of Defendant UTHSCSA that such male administrator "protects" another female student because he is "sleeping with her;" (e) improper sexual innuendo towards Plaintiff MaryD, including but limited to the aforementioned text messages and emails; (f) verbal abuse of Plaintiff MaryD, including but not limited to telling MaryD "you are nothing," constantly insisting that MaryD resign from the graduate program, and telling 4 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 039 1 JANE DOE APPX 040 MaryD that her residency would be made a "living hell" is Mary D elects to continue (g) the refusal to investigate complaints and prosecute as to criminal matters as alleged by Plaintiff MaryD; (h) the utilization of trumped-up, kangaroo-court investigations as a form of intimidation of Plaintiff MaryD; (i) making ridiculous and unnecessary demands on Plaintiff MaryD's educational requirements, including but not limited to requiring a doctor's note for one (1) and two (2) days absence (contrary to Defendant UTHSCSA's written policy requirements), requiring MaryD to work excessive overtime (i.e., in excess of 12 hours), and requiring MaryD to attend meetings and work after suffering physical injuries; (l) Plaintiff MaryD being denied the right and opportunity to perform her educational activities as MaryD deemed fit and appropriate; (m) continued threats of termination of Plaintiff MaryD from the graduate program; (n) manipulation of work scheduling to harass Plaintiff MaryD; and (o) other intimidating communication tactics directed towards Plaintiff MaryD. For the purposes hereof, the foregoing shall be collectively referred to as "UTHSCSA's Reign of Terror." 5 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 040 1 JANE DOE APPX 041 12. UTHSCSA's Reign of Terror directed towards Plaintiff MaryD is an intentional violation of Title IX, Section 504 and Section 1983. 13. As a direct result of UTHSCSA's Reign of Terror, Plaintiff MaryD's mental health has deteriorated and is likely to continue to deteriorate. 14. Plaintiff MaryD has also suffered severe physical, emotional, and economic harm as a result of UTHSCSA's Reign of Terror and shall suffer future physical, emotional, and economic harm. 15. Defendant UTHSCSA's Reign of Terror was committed intentionally and in bad faith. 16. As a result of Defendant UTHSCSA's Reign of Terror directed at Plaintiff MaryD, Plaintiff was forced to engage an attorney and pursue this action to redress such wrongs. 17. Plaintiff MaryD is not aware of any required administrative remedies that must be pursued prior to the filing of this matter. Even if such remedies do exist, the actions of Defendant make it clear that any such efforts would be moot. 18. All conditions precedent to Plaintiff MaryD bringing these claims have been met. 6 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 041 1 JANE DOE APPX 042 E. PLAINTIFF'S CAUSE OF ACTION 19. Plaintiff incorporates by reference the facts set forth in Article D: GENERAL BACKGROUND hereof. COUNT ONE: TITLE IX 20. The sex-based harassment articulated in the Plaintiff MaryD's' Factual Allegations are so severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive that Plaintiff MaryD has been deprived access to educational opportunities or benefits provided by the school. 21. Defendant UTHSCSA created and/or subjected Plaintiff MaryD to a hostile educational environment in violation of Title IX, because: (a) Plaintiff MaryD is a member of a protected class; (b) Plaintiff MaryD was subjected to sexual harassment in the form of unwanted sexual advances, quid pro quo, and a hostile educational environment by an agent of Defendant UTHSCSA; (c) she was subjected to harassment based on her sex; and (d) she was subjected to a hostile educational environment created by the Defendant UTHSCSA's failure to properly investigate and/or address the physical assault, admitted unlawful restraint, and harassment. 22. Defendant UTHSCSA and its officials had actual knowledge of the physical assault, admitted unlawful restraint (in violation of Section 20.02 of the Texas Penal Code), and the resulting harassment of Plaintiff MaryD as shown by Defendant's 7 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 042 1 JANE DOE APPX 043 failure to investigate and discipline or prosecute Plaintiff MaryD's attacker in a timely manner and consistent with its own policy and federal and state law. 23. Defendant UTHSCSA's failure to promptly and appropriately respond to the alleged sexual harassment, resulted in Plaintiff MaryD, on the basis of her sex, being excluded from participation in, being denied the benefits of, and being subjected to discrimination in Defendant's UTHSCSA's education program in violation of Title IX. 24. Defendant UTHSCSA failed to take immediate, effective remedial steps to resolve the complaints of sexual harassment and instead acted with deliberate indifference toward Plaintiff MaryD. 25. Defendant UTHSCSA persisted in its actions and inaction even after Defendant UTHSCSA had actual knowledge of the harm being suffered by Plaintiff MaryD. 26. Defendant UTHSCSA engaged in a pattern and practice of behavior designed to discourage and dissuade students who had been sexually harassed or assaulted from seeking prosecution and protection and from seeking to have sexual harassment fully investigated. 27. Defendant UTHSCSA's policy and/or practice constituted disparate treatment of females (including Plaintiff MaryD) and had a disparate impact on female students (including Plaintiff MaryD). 8 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 043 1 JANE DOE APPX 044 28. Plaintiff MaryD has suffered emotional distress and psychological damage, and her character and standing in her community (and the international community) and further suffered from the harassment fostered as a direct and proximate result of Defendant UTHSCSA's deliberate indifference to MaryD's rights under Title IX. 29. Defendant UTHSCSA has engaged in intentional discrimination based on Plaintiff MaryD's gender as evidenced by the terms and conditions of Plaintiff MaryD's educational work requirements, including, but not limited to, MaryD's continued efforts to constructively remove MaryD from the graduate program. 30. Defendant UTHSCSA's conduct towards Plaintiff MaryD violates Title IX. 31. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD, in violation of Title IX, has caused Plaintiff MaryD to suffer a loss of educational opportunities, benefits, prestige, and economic hardship. 32. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD, in violation of Title IX, has caused Plaintiff MaryD to suffer mental and emotional distress, entitling her to compensatory damages pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. 33. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD was pursued with malice and reckless indifference to the Plaintiff MaryD's federally 9 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 044 1 JANE DOE APPX 045 protected rights, thereby entitling MaryD to punitive damages pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. COUNT TWO: SECTION 504 34. Defendant UTHSCSA, which is a recipient of federal funding, intentionally discriminated against Plaintiff MaryD, who is a "qualified individual with a disability" within the meaning of the Rehabilitation Act, as evidenced by the terms and conditions of the Plaintiff MaryD's educational requirements, including, but not limited to, Plaintiff MaryD's continued efforts to constructively remove MaryD from the graduate program because of her recognized disabilities. 35. Defendant UTHSCSA's conduct towards Plaintiff MaryD violates Section 504. 36. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD, in violation of Section 504, has caused Plaintiff MaryD to suffer economic hardship, benefits, and prestige. 37. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD, in violation of Section 504, has caused Plaintiff MaryD to suffer mental and emotional distress, entitling her to compensatory damages pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. 10 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 045 1 JANE DOE APPX 046 38. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD was pursued with malice and reckless indifference to the Plaintiff MaryD's federally protected rights, thereby entitling MaryD to punitive damages pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. COUNT THREE: Section 1983 39. Under the Fourteenth Amendment, Plaintiff MaryD has the right, as a student attending a publicly funded graduate school, to personal security and bodily integrity and Equal Protection of Laws. 40. Defendant UTHSCSA's officials and agents were all state actors acting under the color of state law. 41. Defendant UTHSCSA and its agents subjected Plaintiff MaryD to violations of her right to personal security and bodily integrity and Equal Protection of Laws by: failing to investigate misconduct; failing to appropriately discipline those responsible; failing to adequately train and supervise; and manifesting deliberate indifference to the assault, admitted unlawful restraint, and ongoing harassment of Plaintiff MaryD. 42. Defendant UTHSCSA has and/or had unconstitutional customs or policies of a) failing to investigate evidence of criminal and tortious misconduct against students in the nature of violations of their right to personal security and bodily 11 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 046 1 JANE DOE APPX 047 integrity and b) failing to adequately train and supervise UTHSCSA employees with regard to maintaining, preserving and protecting students from violations of their right to personal security, bodily integrity, and Equal Protection of the Laws. 43. On information and belief, Defendant UTHSCSA has followed these unconstitutional customs and policies not only with regard to Plaintiff MaryD but also with regard to criminal and tortious misconduct committed against other UTHSCSA students. 44. Defendant UTHSCSA's policies and/or practices constituted disparate treatment of females and had a disparate impact on female students, such as Plaintiff MaryD. 45. Defendant UTHSCSA's conduct towards Plaintiff MaryD violates Section 1983. 46. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD, in violation of Section 1983, has caused Plaintiff MaryD to suffer economic hardship, benefits, and prestige. 47. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD, in violation of Section 1983, has caused Plaintiff MaryD to suffer mental and emotional distress, entitling her to compensatory damages pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. 12 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 047 1 JANE DOE APPX 048 48. Defendant UTHSCSA's discriminatory conduct toward Plaintiff MaryD was pursued with malice and reckless indifference to the Plaintiff MaryD's federally protected rights, thereby entitling MaryD to punitive damages pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. COUNT FOUR: PRE and POST JUDGMENT INTEREST 49. Plaintiff MaryD also requests pre and post judgment interest as may be allowed by applicable law. COUNT FIVE: EXEMPLARY AND PUNITIVE DAMAGES 50. As described, the actions of Defendant UTHSCSA entitle Plaintiff MaryD exemplary and punitive damages of which MaryD seeks $5,000,000. COUNT SIX: ATTORNEYS' FEES 51. Plaintiff MaryD should be awarded her reasonable and necessary attorneys' fees incurred in relation to the foregoing as allowed by applicable law. F. REQUEST FOR JURY 52. Plaintiff MaryD hereby requests that a jury be empaneled, and, that the foregoing causes of actions and requests for relief be presented to such jury for resolution. 13 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 048 1 JANE DOE APPX 049 G. REQUEST FOR DISCLOSURE 53. Plaintiff Jane D hereby requests that Defendant provide the applicable answers to the Request for Disclosure provided in Rule 194 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure. H. SELF-AUTHENTICATION 54. Plaintiff Mary D hereby invokes Rule 193.7 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure regarding Self-Authentication. Therefore, this is deemed notice to Defendant that Plaintiff MaryD may use, in pre-trial or trial hereof, any pleading or document produced by Defendant. I. PRAYER WHEREFORE, PREMISES CONSIDERED, Plaintiff MARY UTHSCSA-MP DOE prays that citation be issued; that Defendant be cited to appear; that upon final trial hereof; that judgment be entered in favor of Plaintiff MaryD for the actual, consequential, and exemplary damages set forth herein including pre and post judgment interest; that Plaintiff MaryD be reimbursed her reasonable and necessary attorneys' fees required to bring this matter; that all costs of Court be taxed against Defendant; that all costs of Court be taxed against Defendant; and that Plaintiff MaryD have such further and other relief, general and special, both at law or in equity, to which she may show herself to be justly entitled. 14 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 049 1 JANE DOE APPX 050 Respectfully submitted, HENSLEE* & GORMAN, pllc By: Terry P Gorman, Esq. Texas Bar No. 08218200 Chigozie F. Odediran, Esq. Texas Bar No. 24098196 901 Mopac Expressway South, Suite 300 Austin, Texas 78746 Telephone: (512) 320-9177 Telecopier: (512) 597-1455 ATTORNEYS FOR PLAINTIFF MARY UTHSCSA-MP DOE *Retired 15 PLAINTIFF'S ORIGINAL PETITION tpg 2018.09.11 JANE DOE APPX 050