The past week saw two major activism events at Ohio University, both influenced by the ongoing protests at the University of Missouri.
Various student groups spoke out this week, including the Ohio University Student Union, OU’s NAACP chapter, BLAC, Sierra Student Coalition, among others.
OU students ‘Stand with Mizzou’ at NAACP event
After threats were made to students at Mizzou, Ohio University activism groups stood in support during a rally on Wednesday night. The event was held by OU’s NAACP chapter, who sent a letter to Mizzou in solidarity with the students there. [The Athens Messenger]
More than 100 people attended the event, which took place at Scripps Amphitheater. Student Union member Ryan Powers told The Post: “It’s important that we show the students at Mizzou that they are supported, and it’s important that we stand up to racism wherever its exists. One of the biggest reasons I’m here is because we need to start addressing racism in every aspect including at Ohio University.” [The Post]
Some students chimed in on social media about the event using the hashtag #OUStandsWithMizzou
Proud to be part of a university that takes a stand on the important issues in the world #OUStandsWithMizzou
— Sam Conrath-Sweeney (@samconrath) November 13, 2015
— Adrienne, like Rocky (@_aerford11) November 12, 2015
President Mcdavis came out for #OUStandsWithMizzou ✊?
— the sweetest girl (@MorgannLaNae) November 11, 2015
Student groups march in Rally for Campus Democracy
Then, on Thursday, student groups met outside of Baker Center as part of the Rally for Campus Democracy, in connection with the #MillionStudentMarch, a national campaign for college students. The event was hosted by OU Student Union, whose demands included having OU recognize student unionization, be transparent about its investments, and giving student oversight to a climate survey. [Facebook]
Over 80 attended the event, including members of student groups BLAC, Sierra Student Coalition, OU’s NAACP chapter and Bobcats for Bernie Sanders. Students marched from Baker to Morton Hill before stopping at the amphitheater in front of the four new residence halls on South Green. [The Post]
Jacob Chaffin, a graduate student in critical studies told The New Political: “I’m here because I’m a grad student at OU and I did my undergrad here. I’m in a lot of debt, right around the average of $28,000 of debt that Ohio University students owe when they graduate. So this is something that directly affects me.” [The New Political]
However, some students differed from the views of the protestors. In a letter to The Post, one OU senior said he disagreed with some of the protestors’ views and and said there was “no merit to protesting an entire smorgasbord of complaints at the same time.” [Jacob Zuckerman]
The Post also published a video summarizing the event: