The assistant general counsel for the University of North Texas submitted her resignation Friday following her use a racially derogatory term at a campus event.
"In an effort to teach students about the boundaries of free speech, I used the racial epithet as an example of offensive language that is protected under the First Amendment. I deeply regret the hurt that my speech has caused," Sewell wrote in her resignation letter.
The utterance occurred at an event called "When Hate Comes to Campus," according to North Texas Daily, the student paper, and confirmed in a statement by university officials.
President Neal Smatresk and Chancellor Lesa Roe released a joint statement Friday saying they were handling the incident with "regret and determination."
Part of the statement said, "While Ms. Sewell was trying to make a point about First Amendment speech, the references used are never condoned in our community, which prides itself on our diversity and caring nature."
The NT Daily noted that, according to attendees, while Sewell used the phrase "f-word" in place of a different word, she did not similarly censor herself while using the n-word.
The school is offering counseling services to students following the incident.
Read Sewell's letter of resignation:
Few words are as evocative as the word I used last night during the University panel discussion about hate speech on campus. In an educational environment, I thought I could educate.
In an effort to teach students about the boundaries of free speech, I used the racial epithet as an example of offensive language that is protected under the First Amendment. I deeply regret the hurt that my speech has caused. I am submitting my resignation as Assistant General Counsel for the University of North Texas System, effective immediately.
I have given my best effort to this job every day, and it has been a great privilege to work with you, Renaldo, the other members of the Office of General Counsel, and my friends and colleagues on the UNT campus. My time with this institution has been a valuable experience, and one that I hope will make me a better attorney, counselor, and advocate for our Constitutional freedoms in the future.
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