The Syracuse University students calling for change are no longer suspended.
"We cannot move forward productively unless we start with compassion for our students and de-escalation,” said Kent Syverud, the Syracuse University chancellor.
Syverud made the announcement Wednesday at the University Senate meeting.
He said the 23 #NotAgainSU students protesting in Crouse-Hinds Hall since Monday, can continue to occupy the space.
"I’m not going to let students be arrested,” said Syverud. “The students now there can stay there. I've directed arrangements to ensure they are fed and cared for."
"They have some real issues here,” said Amanda Nicholson, the Syracuse University interim deputy senior vice president for enrollment and student experience. “That's what we should be focused on and getting them back to their classes. We have a lot of seniors in this group. They and their parents are interested in crossing the stage in the next few months and we don't want to stop that from happening."
The administration is even promising to make sure students get meals and other necessities from friends and family.
However, Syverud says students will face consequences if they continue to violate campus rules.
Students and faculty members applauded after hearing the students won't be suspended, but they want to see more progress on campus.
"These students have been incredibly courageous and them being as courageous as they were, they stood their ground,” said Biko Gray, a Syracuse University assistant professor of religion. "It was incredibly draconian what happened. I'm disappointed, but happy for the well-being of the students."
Professor Gray says he's witnessing history repeat itself.
"I'm watching these students being labeled as disruptive, when black people have always been disruptive when they fought for their own sense of freedom,” said Gray. “So, I'm hopeful they will be okay, but I'm exhausted and tired that we've been in this place before.”
The administration will work with the students on their ultimate goal - to create a more diverse and inclusive campus. They're also working to revise curriculum and create more multicultural spaces for students.
The administration says Crouse Hinds-Hall will reopen on Thursday at 7 a.m. and resume standard hours. Class will be relocated to other academic buildings.
The students can stay in the building outside of the business hours, but if they leave, they won’t be able to re-enter until the building opens again.