Sophian reports on UMass demands, sit-ins

November 14, 1968

Sophian reports on UMass demands, sit-ins

In the wake of a series of events at UMass, the Sophian published a front page article of the events. The Thursday before, it was reported that a group of five white UMass students assaulted a white student and his black guest, and one of the boys was reported to have said that in the wake of Nixon’s presidential election “n***ers don’t belong at UMass anymore.” When word of the incident spread, black students held a meeting that same night, where they came up with a list of 20 demands for the college. The demands included a black studies program, more black faculty and staff, increased recruitment efforts for black students, and banning campus officers from carrying guns. The next morning at 10:30 85 students and some faculty marched to the Administration building to read their demands, where they were met by the President of the college and the Assistant Dean and Dean of students. UMass’ president announced to the student senate an agreement to the potential disarming of officers in a meeting on November 13th. In a later Sophian article, it was reported that the assault was “a hoax,” but that both students and administrators were still committed to continuing the conversations the incident has started. The article never explained what precisely the “hoax” was.

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[Last updated on October 28, 2018]