The CEO of Yahoo has come under fire for false information that circulated for nearly a decade in regards to his education achievements.
Scott Thompson was appointed as the new CEO of Yahoo just a few months ago, and in the time since he has made some big waves at the company by cutting lackluster mobile applications and letting thousands of employees go. However, it was revealed on Thursday by Daniel Loeb of hedge fund Third Point – an individual who is currently fighting for a seat on the company’s board – that not everything known about Thompson may be on the up and up.
In Thompson’s official bio that has been around since his days as president of PayPal, it has listed that he earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting and computer science from Stone Hill College. Thompson attended the school from 1975 to 1979, but Stone Hill did not begin offering a degree in computer science until four years after he graduated.
While it is unclear if Thompson was aware of this misinformation, it has raised some very serious questions about either his attention to details or Yahoo’s vetting process before naming him to the top job. The company did issue a statement late last night that it would be investigating the matter further in the coming days.
Should it be discovered the information was added without Thompson’s knowledge, he would be free of any criminal charges, but AllThingsD has discovered an audio interview he did in 2009 where the dual degree was mentioned by name, and Thompson did not correct the interviewer, Moira Gunn:
Gunn: Your bachelor’s degree is in accounting and computer science. Now, from both of those, I mean that’s, that’s pretty obvious that’s Paypal. What are the most important things you learned?
Thompson: Yeah. You know, I think and I, I mention this to young kids when I’m on campus, and my son who I was just talking about at Santa Clara, what I’m happiest about in my background is if you work in technology you’re trained to solve problems.
And that’s really it, you’re trained to pull apart very complex things and think about okay, how can I do this or how can I do that or how can I make it better?
And that’s really the background that I have and it started back in my college days, and I think that’s really the wonderful part thing of being an engineer is you think that way.
For a company that is already in financial trouble, and with a nasty fight brewing over control of its board of directors, this is definitely a distraction it did not need.