Yale dean placed on leave after calling people 'white trash' on Yelp

In one review, June Chu referred to clientele at a restaurant as "white trash."

ByABC News
May 18, 2017, 6:26 PM

— -- A Yale University dean has been placed on leave after writing controversial remarks on her Yelp reviews of local businesses, including calling people who dined at one restaurant "white trash."

Screenshots obtained by Yale Daily News on Saturday afternoon reveal several controversial reviews posted using the Yelp account of June Chu, dean of Pierson College.

In an email to the Pierson community obtained by ABC News, Head of College Stephen Davis said Chu has been placed on leave and will not be participating in commencement activities or working with students through the end of the academic year.

In one review for a Japanese Restaurant written seven months ago, Chu wrote that going to the restaurant is the "perfect night out for you" if you are "white trash."

"This establishment is definitely not authentic by any stretch of any imagination and perfect for those low class folks who believe this is a real night out," she wrote.

Chu often stated plainly in her reviews that she was "Asian."

In another review posted three months ago for a Mochi eatery, Chu made additional controversial statements while complaining about the quality and price of the dessert.

"Remember: I am Asian," Chu wrote. "I guess if you were a white person who has no clue what mochi is, this would be fine for you."

In a review written for an Asian fusion restaurant last month, Chu wrote that she is "Chinese American" and typically hates going out to dinner for Chinese food.

"This is not your typical greasy trashy Chinese joint -- and I love it," Chu wrote.

In a review for a burrito restaurant, Chu mentioned that she complained that the rice was not done to the staff, saying, "I am Asian, I know rice."

The most recent review, written last week, praised a movie theater for not having "sketchy crowds" despite it being located in the city of New Haven, where the university is located.

Chu apologized for her reviews in an email to the residential college community on Saturday, the Yale Daily News reported.

“I have learned a lot this semester about the power of words and about the accountability that we owe one another,” Chu wrote. “My remarks were wrong. There are no two ways about it. Not only were they insensitive in matters related to class and race; they demean the values to which I hold myself and which I offer as a member of this community.”

Davis said that he originally thought Chu had only written two Yelp reviews that contained "inappropriate and unacceptable language pertaining to matters of class and race" and had asked the community to envision "a way forward."

"I found out that she was in fact responsible for multiple reprehensible posts, enough to represent a more widespread pattern," he wrote. "The additional posts that surfaced compounded the harm of the initial two, and they also further damaged my trust and confidence in Dean Chu’s accountability to me and ability to lead the students of Pierson College."

Chu did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment.