A former volleyball player at the University of Cincinnati says she was kicked off the school’s team and lost her athletic scholarship after body shaming from two coaches over sexy images on her Instagram account.
Shalom Ifeanyi has since filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court, according to Yahoo. In the suit, Ifeanyi claims that former coach Molly Alvey and executive senior associate athletic director Maggie McKinley harassed and shamed her about the pictures she posted. Eventually, she alleges, she was dismissed from the team by the women because they deemed her photos to be “too sexy.”
Ifeanyi, who is a Black student, is also suing for racial discrimination and sexual discrimination. The 19-year-old claims she was singled out for her photos. Despite complying with orders from Alvey to take them down, the alleged harassment continued.
The lawsuit states, “Upon information and belief, no such requests were made to other members of the women’s volleyball team who were of slighter build and lighter complexion despite photographs picturing them in outfits, including but not limited to, two-piece swimsuits.”
Ifeanyi alleges that Alvey would continue to scan her Instagram posts and say her photos were “too seductive” and sends a bad message to football players. The student athlete claims that after some frustration, she spoke out about the”body shaming.” Then Alvey and McKinley reportedly kicked her off the team, citing a difference in philosophy.
As a result, Ifeanyi left the University of Cincinnati and, due to NCAA rules, cannot compete with a new team for a year as a transfer student, resulting in the loss of her athletic scholarship. She is seeking compensation for “pain and suffering in the form of humiliation, frustration, aggravation, anger and depression.”
A spokesperson for the school said there would be no comment on the lawsuit as it “speaks for itself.”
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Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.