COLUMBIA, Mo. — Students at the University of Missouri-Columbia canceled a march Wednesday evening because of stormy skies, but announced plans to meet with university leaders next week.
Student activist group Concerned Student 1950 posted the announcement on Twitter, saying, “President Wolfe’s resignation only begins to meet our demands for equity at our school.”
It continued with this list of ways to make campus more inclusive:
• Demanding shared governance that prioritizes the voices and decision-making power of students, faculty, and staff across our system
• Increasing black faculty and staff
• Increasing the acceptance, financial support and retention of racially marginalized students
• Increasing resources, funding and personnel for our social justice centers
• Instituting mandatory diversity curriculum and training for all current and future Mizzou students
The notice ended with an announcement that Concerned Student 1950 leaders will meet with Mizzou’s Board of Curators on Nov. 20, to discuss their ideas and concerns.
Those same students planned to march outside the Black Culture Center, but they canceled the event when a strong thunderstorm blew through campus.
Instead, leaders of the movement opted to hold a town hall-style meeting inside the BCC, which they deemed a “safe space” where “media was not allowed.”
Some students going in and out of the building stopped to talk with FOX 4’s Katie Banks about the climate on campus.
“We are all fighting for equality, and it’s my duty to support them,” Mizzou senior Earl Dunn said of his desire to join the movement. “Until we achieve equality, until we feel safe, until we feel like we have a truly fair chance, that’s when things will stop.”
Other students expressed concern for their safety amidst online threats that landed two men in jail for allegedly making terrorist threats.
“It hurts to know that somebody would feel this way about anybody, about one certain class for any reason at all,” said Mizzou freshman Kyra Moss of the threats. “It just sucks that anything like this has to happen.”
The heightened fear was enough to prompt university leaders to send an alert to students announcing extra counselors on staff to answer questions and offer comfort.
“Right now people find themselves feeling afraid,” said David Wallace, director of Mizzou’s Counseling Center.
“[They’re] feeling confused, feeling like they’re out of place, they’re feeling pushed back, they’re feeling exhilarated even at some points here, in what’s going on. If there’s a need to talk about those emotions and those feelings, and try to find a way to become better anchored in life, that’s why we’re here.”
Meanwhile, the Board of Curators met Wednesday night for three hours behind closed doors in an executive session. Members would not reveal what they discussed, only saying that an announcement or statement might come Thursday.