Lecturer Who Trashed Sir Tim Hunt Claims She Was Forced Out Of Job

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By Heat Street Staff | 7:31 am, December 6, 2016

The lecturer who accused Nobel laureate Sir Tim Hunt of sexism in a dispute which cost him his job has quit her university post after claiming she was ‘bundled out’.

Connie St Louis alleged on twitter last year that Sir Tim “utterly ruined” a scientific conference she attended when he announced he was “in favour of single sex labs”.

St Louis claimed this was “sexist”.

In fact, Sir Tim had simply made a joke about women scientists while giving a toast at the conference, which was held in South Korea.

St Louis’ allegation resulted in Sir Tim, 73, being lambasted by some women scientists.

He resigned from his honorary professorship at University College London saying he had had been “hung out to dry” by the institution.

It has now come to light that St Louis – a journalism lecturer – has left City, University of London where she had been employed since 2003.

The college claimed this happened on November 30 by mutual agreement but St Louis complained shortly before her departure last month that the university was trying to ‘get rid’ of her.

In a written submission to a House of Commons committee looking into science communication published last Wednesday she wrote: ‘In May 2016 the new head of the journalism department decided to suspend the science journalism MA. The university’s excuse was that I had not recruited enough students. However, on further investigation it was later discovered that students who tried to apply were told by the university that the course was not taking any application and had closed. It’s difficult to recruit the required number of students under these circumstances. I am certain that this so-called ”suspension” will eventually lead to the course’s complete closure. It was the only masters degree in science journalism in Europe. They will also use the “supposed” low student numbers as a way to ”get rid” and bundle me out of the door. Nothing is too difficult for the new corporatised university.’

The sexism row began when Sir Tim –a world renowned biologist – called for separate labs for men and women scientists in his lighthearted speech 18 months ago.

He said his ‘trouble with girls’ was that they cry when you criticise them and fall in love with male scientists.

St Louis tweeted: ‘Does this Nobel laureate think we live in Victorian times?’

In an online blog she said his ‘awful’ comments were met with a ‘deathly silence’.

However, St Louis’s version of events was challenged after a tape emerged of audience laughter at Sir Tim’s remarks rather than silence.

Sir Tim also explained he was being sarcastic.

An investigation by the Daily Mail then found St Louis had falsely claimed to have written for newspapers including the Daily Mail, Sunday Times and Independent.

In September Heat Street revealed that St Louis’ course had been axed because it was unpopular.

A spokesman for City University said St Louis left by mutual agreement.