We, the Black students of Appalachian State University, are writing to you today with deep concern and exasperation. In our time at the university, we have noticed a profound contradiction between App State’s mission, and its treatment of its students from marginalized groups. We are a collective of current students and recent alumni who have served in leadership in some capacity on App State’s campus. We have attended every town hall, been a member of every committee, task force, and panel. In return we have watched our fellow students, faculty, staff, and other administrators be silenced, threatened, and ultimately forced into leaving App State’s campus to protect their own well-being. This should not be the norm. We are tired of our work and basic demands being ignored and neglected. For years, the current Administration has attempted to hide this reality by creating letters and statements that ignore the trauma and violence that their most marginalized students - Black Students - experience on and off campus. Throughout the last several weeks, statements from the Chancellor’s office have been comprised of lies and deceptive language that disrespect the Black students that have fought for change and have been directly ignored by the current and past administrations. This disrespect also encompasses the policies that were implemented by Black students and supportive staff and faculty over the last decade that have been rolled back.
Appalachian State University’s Administration, which includes Chancellor Sheri Everts, must respond to these demands with a statement by July 10, 2020 at 5pm. Every member of the current administration has been sent this letter, as well as, the Chief Diversity Officer. ALL of the demands must be fully implemented within the next 36 months starting from the time a response is issued. These demands have been strenuously vetted by various students, alumni, and faculty that are not to be changed, edited, or negotiated. In the light of our current climate, if our demands are not met, we will take appropriate nonviolent actions which will disrupt ALL university operations and escalate until our demands are met. This response is not to be inclusive of redirective tactics including, but not limited to, replying with a list of individuals who could meet our needs - this approach does not help students. Instead immediate action must be taken. If other statements from the Chancellor’s office are issued before recognizing our list of demands, we will see this as an act of non-compliance. We will not hesitate to contact the state-wide media sources to publicize our movement and our demands and bring to light the treatment of black students, faculty, and staff at Appalachian State University. In the time between this release of student demands and the deadline we have given App State’s administration, we will document our actions throughout social media using the hashtag #BlackAtAppstate. We invite current and past students to join us in using #BlackAtAppstate to share their experiences of injustice and further marginalization at the university.
Concerned Black Mountaineers
The full context of our detailed demands can be read at https://tinyurl.com/yblqayqy or blackatappstate.com
Follow us on Instagram at @BlackatAppstate
Why is this important?
Sign this petition if you support Black and brown students and want to be on the RIGHT side of history.