students ‘felt humiliated’ by group directors

CINCINNATI — An internal University of Cincinnati survey found that students in UC Bearcat bands “felt publicly humiliated” by the top two directors during practices and rehearsals, and “didn’t feel comfortable find themselves alone in the offices with the directors”.

The investigation revealed that director Christopher Nichter and Assoc. Principal Nicholas Angelis violated university policy by being “discourteous” to students, according to letters that UC Asst. Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students Juan Guardia wrote to both principals in February.

UC placed Nichter and Angelis on paid leave on Dec. 17.

They were not allowed to participate with the band when the students performed two weeks later at the Cotton Bowl where UC lost to Alabama in the college football playoffs.

There were “areas of concern presented as recurring themes” by the students, Guardia wrote in the letters to Nichter and Angelis.

“Students have seen their peers cry and are reluctant to bring their concerns directly to principals,” Guardia wrote.

According to Guardia’s letters, Nichter and Angelis received “verbal advice”.

Both men must complete the courses Combating Gender Bias in the Workplace and Compassionate Leadership.

Guardia’s letters also informed the two trustees that they are required to develop a plan that “will foster a healthy, collaborative, and equitable band community.”

UC reinstated Nichter on February 9.

The university reinstated Angelis on February 15.

At the bottom of her letter, Angeles wrote, “I disagree and dispute the findings on which the allegations are based. I will also abide by the working agreement.”

Nichter did not write a comment on his letter.

Angelis and Nichter did not immediately respond to emails and voicemails from the I-Team seeking comment.

According to Gaurdia’s letters, Nichter and Angelis could be fired if they fail to meet the terms of their reinstatement.