Who: CMCers of Color, Brothers and Sisters Alliance, Sexuality and Gender Alliance, Asian Pacific American Mentors, GenU
Aftermath: Spellman resigned on November 12. A day earlier, when the demonstrations took place, President Hiram Chodosh sent out a letter announcing the creation of new leadership positions on diversity and inclusion; a greater emphasis on recruiting and hiring people of color and teaching about diversity issues; and the establishment of a center dedicated to diversity, identity, and free speech. Protest organizers continue to push for their involvement in decision-making around resources and hiring, stressing that their efforts are just beginning. “This is not the be-all and end-all,” Jincy Varughese, a senior environment, economics and politics major, told the Times. “The fact that it took eight months of protest and two students saying that they wanted to go on a hunger fast to create all of this to happen is very telling.”
What: A “solidarity walkout” organized during the college’s family weekend whose main demand was that its president, Tom Rochon, step down. Protesters distributed a document, “The Case Against Tom Rochon,” a scathing censure that accuses the president of “incompetence,” “disregard for minority community members,” and “disconnection from what is actually happening at [Ithaca College] and what needs to happen.” (The source of the document is unclear.) The Ithaca College protest has been closely compared to that at Mizzou and was, according to the Ithaca Journal and student newspaper The Ithacan, prompted by “ongoing concerns of racial injustice” on campus, including “a string of … race-related incidents” in the weeks leading up to the demonstration.
Who: People of Color at Ithaca College
Aftermath: The chair of the school’s board of trustees, Tom Grape, issued a statement on the same day of the walkout assuring students that administrators would do their best to heed their concerns. Grape noted that the board is “actively partnering” with the president and other campus leaders to ensure “that Ithaca College will emerge from this chapter stronger and more resolute in its direction forward.” (The day prior to the protest, college leaders announced the creation of a new chief diversity officer position; the college's current associate provost for diversity, inclusion, and engagement is taking up the role in the interim.) In December 2015, roughly three-fourths of students and faculty voted “no confidence” in Rochon. On January 14, 2016, Rochon announced that he plans to step down from his position in July 2017. “I believe it is best for IC to be led in the future by a president chosen by the board specifically to make a fresh start on these challenges,” Rochon said in a statement, “including those that became so apparent to us all last semester.” In a post on their Facebook page, the students who organized the protests wrote, “We did it!… #TomRochonNoConfidence.”