Meet set over controversial FAU donation

Feb. 26, 2013 at 1:13 PM
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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Feb. 26 (UPI) -- The president of Florida Atlantic University says she has agreed to meet with students upset about naming the school's football stadium after a prison operator.

About 100 students had protested FAU's decision last week to name the facility GEO Group Stadium, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported Monday.

President Mary Jane Saunders said she will hold a public meeting Friday about GEO Group, a Boca Raton-based company that made a $6 million donation to the school.

Students said the company had a track record of human rights violations. It has been fined for the Occupational Health and Safety Administration and has lost lawsuits about mistreatment of prisoners.

Saunders called GEO Group a "wonderful company." She said she had not anticipated any controversy about the donation because GEO is publicly traded.

GEO Group President and Chief Executive Officer George Zoley is a former chairman of the FAU board of trustees.

The company released a statement saying the students' complaints were based on "incomplete facts and a fundamental misunderstanding of what our company does."

Saunders did not indicate she might decline the donation, which will be used for scholarships and to help pay off the debt on the stadium.

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