Sunday, April 28, 2024

Hail To Thee, My Alma Mater

CBS, Cal Poly Humboldt closes campus through end of semester amid pro-Palestinian protests

California State Polytechnic University, Humboldt announced Friday that all classes and school business will be conducted remotely for the rest of the semester amid a student occupation on campus protesting the ongoing war in Gaza.

University officials extended the closure of the campus until May 10 — the end of the semester — saying instruction would continue to be remote, after protesters at the university in northern California used furniture, tents, chains and zip ties to block entrances to an academic and administrative building on Monday.

Commencement at the school is currently scheduled for May 11.

Officials said in a statement Tuesday that students had occupied a second building and three students had been arrested. On Wednesday, officials said some unidentified people who were not students were also inside one of the occupied buildings. On Thursday, the university said protesters continued to occupy the two buildings.

A dean at the school, Jeff Crane, suggested during the meeting that the university form a committee that would include students to do a deep dive into the school's investments. Crane also suggested faculty and students continue meeting every 24 hours to keep an open line of communication. The sides have yet to announce an agreement.

The school's senate of faculty and staff demanded the university's president resign in a no-confidence vote Thursday, citing the decision to call police in to remove the barricaded students Monday which led to a violent clash during otherwise peaceful demonstrations.

On Friday, the university released a statement responding to questions from those occupying the buildings. The statement said there will be consequences for actions that violate policy or law, but officials would take into account actions by any students who choose to evacuate the occupied buildings and support efforts to clear them. It did not say the charges faced by those arrested would be dropped.
Humboldt, at the time Humboldt State University, is where Georgia and I got our undergrad degrees, so long ago it's almost embarrassing.  Located conveniently 280 miles (more or less), north of San Francisco, it has a long (and well deserved) reputation for hippiness. The only demonstration I recall from our years their was a mass march around the statue (now removed) of Pres. William McKinley in  the Arcata town square after Kent State. Much wine was consumed, and more than a little weed smoked.

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