A group of Syracuse University administrators is met with members of #NotAgainSU, Monday evening. It was a closed session, but a few floors below the conference room, students listen to a live stream.
- RELATED | #NotAgainSU Protests Take Over City Streets
- RELATED | SU: Former U.S. AG to Lead Review of DPS' Handling of Protest
"We all messed this up and I'm sorry," said Amanda Nicholson, the Assistant Provost and Dean of Student Success at Syracuse University. "What we know is our current policies on how we work with protests have failed. They don't work. This is not a workable situation. We need to come up with something that really does work."
#NotAgainSU students have a list of demands for the administration. They range from a tuition freeze to revising campus safety policies.
It's been two weeks since student protesters began their second sit-in at Crouse-Hinds Hall. In that time, Department of Public Safety officers withheld food and used force to block doors. Students say this is an ongoing problem.
"You guys do not care about the student experience, particularly the black student experience,” said one student in the meeting. “You have demonstrated that you will do everything in your power to make sure that we do not have the basic resources to pursue our education on this campus."
Chancellor Kent Syverud was out of town. He called in between meetings and was on the line for about 35 minutes.
"I don't intend to walk away from my responsibilities as chancellor, particularly a university that models inclusion for all students,” said Syverud. “I do intend to take responsibility for the mishandling of the early days of this protest."
Early in the meeting, university leadership agreed to a handful of the students’ requests. They said they couldn't agree to other demands because of legal issues. Most of the meeting involved negotiations, which will continue this week.
#NotAgainSU began their protests in the fall after a series of hate crimes and bias-related graffiti on campus. The students say racism is an ongoing issue.