A professor from Laney College in Oakland, Cailfornia has been placed on administrative leave after asking a student to “Anglicize” her name.
On the second day of class, mathematics professor Matthew Hubbard asked Phuc Bui Diem Nguyen to “Anglicize” her name because “Phuc Bui sounds like an insult in English,” Hubbard told Nguyen in an email.
Nguyen said she was shocked and felt disrespected upon receiving the email as the professor had never seen her before or asked her how to pronounce her name.
She replied back to Hubbard’s email and told him his request feels “discriminatory” and warned him she would file a Title IX complaint if he did not refer to her by her birth name. He responded by saying her name in English sounds like a curse word.
Hubbard added, “If I lived in Vietnam and my name in your language sounded like [a curse word], I would change it to avoid embarrassment.” He also repeated his request in the reply.