The Collegian
Monday, May 16, 2022


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"We are excited to announce the passage of our first joint resolution. For the first time in memory, RCSGA & WCGA have spoken with one voice to provide the student perspective on an issue of critical importance to our campus.

Presently, Richmond's story is not being told with complete honesty. Dr. Ryland and Douglas Southall Freeman may have had complex legacies, but there is no doubt that both men played an active role in the maintenance and entrenchment of white supremacy.

For too long, Richmond has abdicated its responsibility to provide a wide variety of readily accessible educational resources regarding our university's history.

Questions of race, gender, class, citizenship, and power are all central to UR's history, and we ought to grapple with their implications.

We believe the first step toward change comes with considering the names of our buildings and the context of the individuals they are intended to honor. Students of color have to attend class and live in buildings named for men who believed them to be inherently inferior.

This is no longer acceptable.

We do not believe our history should be erased, but the way we reflect that history needs to be rectified. Building names need to be changed to reflect Richmond's aspirations for greater diversity and inclusivity at this institution.

We look forward to discussions about how context should be added, and we hope to continue amplifying the voices of students of color in this process. This resolution would not have been possible without the remarkable advocacy from students of color, and we expect that more students will be included in the decision-making process going forward.

Student Government is confident that we are now headed in the right direction.

We are appreciative of the leadership team of the Presidential Commission for University History and Identity for sitting down with us to discuss the myriad possibilities for how we might do better on this front going forward.

Every student deserves to be aware of and negotiate with our university's history. With this resolution, we offer a foundation."

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