Over two weeks ago, students at Syracuse University held a rally to air problems they hold with the administration of the university.
Called the Diversity and Training Rally (DAT Rally), the rally was sparked after students realized that campus officials had made decisions for students without any input. A group called THE General Body was formed as a result.
Their grievances cover a wide range of issues and start with a feeling that a lack of transparency exists between the administration and the student body. THE General Body is claiming several decisions were made without the input from the University Senate or SA.
Located on its website, thegeneralbody.org, the grievances are that the Advocacy Center, a location for survivors of domestic and sexual violence to seek assistance, was closed and the way it was closed without student input; the defunding of the POSSE program, an initiative to provide college opportunities to inner-city youth; a lack of diversity among members of the university’s Fast Forward program, which aims to improve the campus academics, infrastructure and find ways to fund these plans; the administration’s rejection of a tenure and promotion policy proposed by the University Senate in May; as well as the administration’s decision to not reduce its use of fossil fuels.
Since the rally was held, Nov. 3, students also held a sit-in at Crouse-Hinds Hall. It lasted for 18 consecutive days and students left together on Thursday around 2:45 p.m., according to The Daily Orange, the University’s student-run newspaper.
This student-organized protest shows the word of the student body is important. The progress that was made on Syracuse University’s campus is something that should be seen on all campuses. It wasn’t about a particular group of students benefitting from the changes, but a collective betterment for the student community.
While the sit-in phase of THE General Body has ended, they will continue to fight for the students just down State Route 481. Oswego State students should take a look at what they continue to fight for. They should stand in solidarity with fellow students, supporting the cause. Not being a Syracuse University student does not mean you cannot stand at the side of fellow students.