A Minnesota liberal arts professor who was fired after showing students pictures of Muhammad in a class on Islamic art has warned students about curricular activities.
Erica Lopez Prater, an assistant professor at Hamline University, warned students about images of holy figures, including the Prophet Muhammad and Buddha, in the classroom, the New York Times reported Sunday. According to the report, students were told they could contact him with any concerns about the course material, but none did.
Prater reportedly warned students that a picture of Muhammad would be displayed minutes before and gave anyone who might be offended by such images an opportunity to leave the classroom.
Despite repeated warnings, a senior in the class later complained to administrators about the images and was supported by Muslim students who were not in the class, resulting in Prater’s reinstatement and sparking a national controversy surrounding academic freedom. .
Hamlin University President Fainice Miller wrote a letter to students last month apologizing for the incident, saying that not offending the school’s Muslim students is more important than academic freedom.
“Our goal is not to assign blame; Rather, we would like to emphasize that respect for the observing Muslim students in that classroom should have taken precedence over academic freedom when an image that was not allowed to be viewed by Muslims was displayed on the screen for several minutes. Miller said in the letter.
Miller acknowledged in the letter that “academic freedom is very important” but stressed that “it does not have to come at the expense of caring and being courteous to others.”
Reached for comment by Fox News Digital last week, a school spokeswoman said it was important that students “feel safe, supported and respected both in and out of our classrooms.”
The spokeswoman also clarified Prater’s role at the school, noting that “the adjunct professor is teaching for the first time at Hamline” and that she “received an appointment letter for the fall semester and taught the course through the end of the term.”
Hamlin University did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment on the curriculum and multiple warnings to students.