BU says geology professor sexually harassed grad student in Antarctica

Students walked across the campus of Boston University. – JESSICA RINALDI/GLOBE STAFF/FILE 2015

Boston University has found evidence that a well-known geologist sexually harassed a graduate student almost two decades ago while on an isolated field expedition in Antarctica and could fire him for the violations.

The allegations against David Marchant, which came to light last month, stunned the university’s earth and environment department, where he was a well-known and popular professor. It has also triggered a congressional investigation and increased calls from the university’s graduate students for more protections against sexual harassment.

After a 13-month investigation, university officials uncovered enough evidence that Marchant’s “sexual harassment was sufficiently severe and pervasive so as to create a hostile learning and living environment,’’ according to a letter BU Provost Jean Morrison sent to faculty on Friday.