Fareed Zakaria left his post on Yale's board as he reevaluates his professional life
Fareed Zakaria, the Time magazine editor-at-large and CNN host who recently admitted to plagiarism, resigned from his position on Yale University's board to reevaluate his professional life, a Yale spokesman told TheWrap.
In a letter to Yale President Richard Levin, Zakaria — a Yale alumnus — said he planned to focus on his work in the wake of a plagiarism inquiry that raised questions about the veracity of prominent reporter's large oeuvre of journalism.
"I am reexamining my professional life and I have recognized that, in order to focus on the core of my work, I will have to shed some of my other responsibilities," Zakaria wrote in the letter, obtained by TheWrap. "My service at Yale is the single largest commitment of time, energy and attention outside of my writing and television work."
Time and CNN briefly suspended Zakaria this month for lifting paragraphs from a New Yorker essay about gun control and re-purposing them, almost verbatim, in his Time column.
Yale also launched a review of Zakaria's position on the board last week, but that process was curtailed after the journalist's resignation.
"My colleagues and I are deeply grateful for Fareed Zakaria's generous contribution of time and service to the Yale Corporation these past six years," Levin said in a statement to TheWrap. "His keen intelligence and broad knowledge of world affairs have enlightened our discussions, and his appearances on campus have benefited our students and faculty. We will miss him as a colleague, a contributor and a friend."
But last week, both news outlets said they found no other instances of plagiarism, termed the matter an "isolated incident" and reinstated Zakaria.
He is expected to return to CNN on Sunday, Aug. 26.
Here is the full text of the letter:
With great sadness, I have decided that I will not be able to serve a second term as a Successor Fellow of the Yale Corporation. I am reexamining my professional life and I have recognized that, in order to focus on the core of my work, I will have to shed some of my other responsibilities. My service at Yale is the single largest commitment of time, energy, and attention outside of my writing and television work. The work of the Yale Corporation needs and deserves such attention, but I simply do not have the capacity to do it and keep up with my main professional obligations. I intend to do less in other areas as well, but I thought it best to let you know first, so that the Corporation could begin deliberations on a successor.
I came to Yale as a scholarship kid from India in 1982 and instantly fell in love with it. That affection has never waned. I have tried to give back to the university a small measure of what it gave me — devoting time, effort, and resources, as best I could. Serving for a term on the Yale Corporation has been an extraordinary opportunity. I have learnt a great deal from it and I will be shaped by this experience forever.
I wish you, the Corporation, and Yale all the very best as you move forward. I shall be watching and cheering.