Searching over 5,500,000 cases.

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Singh v. Holy Cross Hospital

March 13, 2007


The opinion of the court was delivered by: Judge Virginia M. Kendall


Gajendra Singh ("Plaintiff" or "Singh"), pro se, sued Holy Cross Hospital ("Defendant" or "HCH") for impermissibly failing to hire or promote him on the basis of his race, color, and national origin in violation of Title VII. Singh was not offered full-time employment with HCH after applying to be a full-time employee when he was working part-time at HCH. Plaintiff and Defendant have cross-moved for summary judgment. Because Plaintiff cannot establish a prima facie case of discrimination or present evidence that HCH's proffered reasons for failing to hire him for a full-time position were a pretext for discrimination, Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment is granted and Plaintiff's Motion for Summary Judgment is denied.


Plaintiff, a native of India, attended college and medical school in India. Defendant's Statement of Undisputed Material Facts (hereafter "Def. 56.1 Facts") at ¶2. He received his Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery degrees in 1995 from the University of Rajasthan in Jaipur, India. Id. Plaintiff's Response and Objection on Defendant's Statement of Undisputed Facts (hereafter "Pltf. 56.1 Resp.") at ¶ 2. Singh moved to the United States from India in 2002. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 2. Plaintiff became a registered Surgical Assistant ("SA") in the United States in 2003. Id. at ¶ 4.

Plaintiff applied for a position at HCH in December 2003. Id. at ¶ 5. Plaintiff had experience as a result of his prior medical training, but had no prior experience working as an SA. Pltf. 56.1 Resp. at ¶ 6. Plaintiff interviewed at HCH with Ruth Zych ("Zych"), the Director of Surgical Services. Def. 56.1 at ¶ 7. During the interview, Plaintiff informed Zych that he wanted to obtain a full-time SA position; at the time he applied, Singh also worked part-time as a research assistant at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Id. at ¶ 5, 7.

Zych hired Plaintiff as a Registry Surgical Assistant ("RSA") on a part-time basis, while Plaintiff retained his work as a research assistant at the University of Illinois as well. Pltf. Dep. at 48. As an RSA, Zych was Plaintiff's direct supervisor. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 9. RSAs perform the same duties as SAs, including ensuring that the operating room is sterile, assisting with the placement of surgical sponges and retractors, and suturing. Zych Decl., Def. Ex. 4, at ¶ 5. SAs and RSAs both work under the direct supervision of the operating surgeon. RSAs, however, are not full-time employees, are paid by the hour, and do not receive employment benefits. Id.

Plaintiff began work as a part-time RSA at HCH in January 2004. Four days after starting at HCH, Plaintiff resigned from his position with the University of Illinois and asked Zych to be transferred to a full-time SA position at HCH. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶¶ 31-32. At the time he made his request, there were no full-time SA positions available at HCH. Zych told Singh that she would consider him if any such positions became available. Zych Decl. at ¶ 23.

Plaintiff Begins work at HCH

When Plaintiff started work at HCH, he attended the required general employee orientation conducted by human resources and signed forms confirming that he had attended the training and received the harassment and discrimination policy. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶¶ 11-14; Pltf. Dep., Def. Ex. 4, at 77-79. HCH also requires new RSA employees to complete a more detailed orientation specific to the Department of Surgical Services ("DSS"). Def. 56.1 at ¶¶ 15-16. The orientation includes a checklist to be completed by the new employee and his or her designated "preceptor." Id. at ¶ 17. HCH assigned Edguardo Arzadon ("Arzadon"), a full-time SA, to be Singh's preceptor. Id. at ¶ 18.

On the first day of the orientation, Singh completed the first three items out of fifteen items on the DSS checklist; after the first day, however, Singh did not complete the remaining tasks or ask Arzadon to sign off on any completed orientation tasks. Id. at ¶ 19. Among the uncompleted tasks were the "Departmental Policy & Procedure Manual Review," the "Departmental Safety Protocol Review," the "Departmental Infection Control Guidelines Review." Def. Ex. 4 at Ex. 11.

The first week Plaintiff began work at HCH, staff members working with him voiced concerns to Zych. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 22. Zych received feedback that Singh did not appear to have the experience necessary to be an SA, lacked initiative, did not appear to understand sterility techniques and operating room procedure, and was not performing his duties during surgery. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶¶ 22-23. Zych met with Singh in early March to discuss his progress; Singh believed that he performed well in his position but did not agree with the chain of command in the Operating Room. He also told Zych that he would take direction only from her. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 26, Pltf. Dep. at 111.

Also in March, Zych asked Singh's colleagues to evaluate him as part of his initial performance review. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 27. While the evaluations praised Singh's work directly with patients, the evaluations all raised concerns about his knowledge of operating room procedure and terms, his sterility techniques, his ability to work respectfully with his co-workers, and his ability to anticipate the needs of the surgical team in the operating room. See. Def. Ex. 4, Dep. Ex. 13. Singh completed his self-evaluation with an overall rating of "4," the highest rating. Id.

Plaintiff Seeks Full-Time Employment

In March 2004, a full-time SA position became available. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 33; Pltf. 56.1 Resp. at ¶ 33. Zych left a note on Singh's locker at work stating that she would be interviewing candidates later that week. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 34; Pltf. 56.1 Resp. at ¶ 34. Singh told Zych he was interested in the position. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 35. When referred to the human resources department, Plaintiff learned that HCH was considering several candidates, both internal and external. Def. 56.1 Facts at ¶ 35. Plaintiff ...

Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.