University Allegedly Blocks Older Worker’s Job Applications After Encouraging Her With False Hope


Employee Files Lawsuit against Widener University for Age Discrimination

After over thirty years of dedicated work at Widener University, Mary, age 61, learned that her Administrative Assistant position was being eliminated. Her supervisor at Widener University encouraged her to apply for an open secretary position at the university, which required a high school diploma or GED. The assistant dean even told Mary that she wanted to hire her for the open position.

During a meeting between Mary and the assistant dean to discuss the secretary position, the Dean arrived and requested to speak with the assistant dean “privately.” A few hours later, according to Mary, the assistant dean explained to Mary that the original job description had an error. They wanted a secretary with a bachelor’s degree. Or, at least, this was their excuse.

Mary returned to the job hunt, searching for an internal position at Widener University. Her search revealed a new job opening for a position that looked almost identical to her “eliminated” position. The only differences were the modified job title and a responsibility of being the liaison between various schools. Mary had all of the experience necessary for this reinvented position, but Mary suspects this was Widener’s underhanded way of replacing the old with younger workers.

Unsurprisingly, the applicant who received the job opening for Administrative Support Specialist was significantly younger than Mary. Meanwhile, Widener University allegedly terminated fifteen other employees around the same time as Mary, all of whom were over the age of forty. Clearly, Widener University discriminated against Mary and many more employees due to their age.

A dedicated and experienced employee, Mary still has many valuable working years ahead of her. Widener University broke the law by obviously discriminating against Mary for her age. Employees above a certain age are legally protected classes by the law. And yet, Widener University denies these claims. KM&A champions the employee rights of people like Mary.

Full text of this complaint, as filed with the District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, is available at docket no: 2:17-cv-03089-GEKP

Kraemer, Manes & Associates LLC is an employment law firm with principal offices in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, serving all counties in Pennsylvania, focusing on employment law, business law, litigation, and civil issues. KM&A clients include employees, small businesses, parties in litigation, and people with a variety of legal issues.

For more information about this case, contact Attorney Jonathan Chase at 215-475-3504 or at

NOTICE: All information contained in this statement comes from the Complaint which has been filed as a public record with the court. As dedicated civil rights attorneys, we strongly believe in the public value of telling our clients’ stories: violators can be held accountable, and other silent victims can feel empowered to stand up for their legal rights. Although we make every attempt to verify our clients’ claims, note that the defendant is expected to oppose our client’s position, and the court has not ruled one way or the other as of the date of this statement.