Dentist files retaliation lawsuit against USC, claiming firing followed supervisor altering students' grades

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Former Los Angeles-based University of Southern California School of Dentistry professor Jucheng Chen, DDS, is suing his former employer, according to KNBC, an NBC affiliate.

The dentist claims he was fired in 2017 after complaining to the university that students' grades had been changed. Dr. Chen is alleging wrongful termination, retaliation and age discrimination.

During his 20 years at the school of dentistry working as an assistant professor, Dr. Chen never came across an incident when his students' grades were changed without his knowledge. However, in 2017, Dr. Chen alleges he noticed many of the grades he gave to his freshman dental class were "significantly altered without his consent," according to KNBC.

Thinking the grades had been hacked, Dr. Chen reported the changes to the university's information technology department. The department later told Dr. Chen the school of dentistry Associate Dean Mahvash Navazeh, DMD, ordered the grades to be changed, the lawsuit alleges.

Dr. Chen went to other faculty members to report and complain about the incident. However, 10 days later Dr. Chen allegedly received letter notifying him he was being fired, effective June 2017.

The dean told Dr. Chen he was not being fired due to the grade changing complaints, according to the lawsuit. Dr. Chen claims the university did not give him a reason for his firing. The dentist maintains another reason for his dismissal was his age.

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