College students around the country are showing their support for protestors at the University of Missouri.
A student group at Ithaca College, People of Color, has been making headlines since yesterday for leading over a 1,000 students in a walkout yesterday demanding that their own president, Tom Rochon, for his poor judgement and lack of urgency around incidents of racism on their campus. Yale University is also seeing unrest, as on Monday, students interrupted a panel on free speech to call attention to students’ recent, racist Halloween costumes.
But now there are also rallies, walkouts and statements of support from colleges all over the country including: University of Colorado-Denver, Smith College, University of Michigan, Cornell University, Emory University, University of Wisconsin, Syracuse University, University of Maryland at College Park and Baltimore County, Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), Goucher College, American University, Howard University, Claremont McKenna University, New York University and George Mason University.
Cornell’s Black Students United group left a touching, passionate and lengthy letter on Facebook addressed to their fellow students at Mizzou, Yale and Ithaca, saying:
In light of recent events affecting black students at the University of Missouri, Yale University, and Ithaca College, we, Black Students United at Cornell University, wish to extend an arm in solidarity. We believe that a threat to justice on one campus is a threat to justice on all campuses. We admire our peers’ tenacity and bravery in the fight against white supremacy in their respective universities. Your actions have not gone unnoticed, and they will forever be honored in the legacy of black student activists at predominantly white institutions.
The letter went on urging other students at other predominantly white schools not to be complacent, but to take on the fight for justice in their own ways at their prospective campuses to empower the movement.
NBC Affiliate KGW reports that at Claremont McKenna, a small liberal arts college in California, minority students gathered to share their stories of discrimination and feeling alienated by the lack of resources on campus. The protestors directed their complaints to Dean of Students, Mary Spellman.
“It’s literally your job to help us, to take care of us when we don’t feel safe and supported on this campus,” said one protestor.
Today, University of Colorado-Denver students will start their protests at noon, local time. On the organizers’ Facebook page, “CALL TO ACTION: CU-Denver in Solidarity with Mizzou”, the group invites protestors of all races, ethnicities and backgrounds to get involved. Their group left an equally touching letter to the Mizzou students, saying:
To the Students of Color at Mizzou,
We see your courage, your boldness. We see your strength. We applaud you for your fervor and resolve. We at the University of Colorado-Denver want you to know that we stand with you and that you are not alone. Your actions have prompted a nationwide reaction that has encouraged students of color to demand more from our institutions. You are trailblazers. Continue to stand strong when faced with adversity.
We are sending prayers and thoughts for your safety, we are sending our love.
Power, Hope, and Strength always,
Black Students and Allies at the University of Colorado-Denver
About 200 attended the protest at Smith yesterday, while Emory gathered approximately 50 students. College senior and protest organizer, Casidy Campbell, defiantly spoke out to the cop cars and other civilians blocked in the road by the protest.
“I hope all of ya’ll heard me today,” Campbell said. “This what I’m feeling. This is what we’re feeling. And if it’s not recognized then we’ll come back again, and the next day, and the next day. And we will block traffic and you won’t eat and you won’t sleep and you’ll run out of gas. Do you understand me?”
Though a relatively small group, Emory students were highly organized in listing the following demands to their university’s administration online including:
-recognition of traumatic events for black students by the University
-institutional support for black students facing trauma on campus
-repercussions or sanctions for racist actions on campus
-the consultation of black students and faculty during the implementation of diversity
-higher compensation and positions for black staff and administrators
-tighter job security for black administrators
-increased funding and decreased policing for black student organizations
more faculty of color in all departments
Mizzou’s director of ‘Greek Life’ placed on leave following confrontation with photographer
Howard University’s students have shared their support on campus and through social media as well, though the university is currently on high alert. Just last night, yet another person made a threat to kill Black students expressing solidarity with the Mizzou cause.
The school’s president issued a letter saying that the school has beefed up its security and is encouraging students to report any unusual or alarming activity.
See images from students showing their support at other colleges below: