5,000 signatures reached
To: Michael V. Drake and the Senior UCLA Administration
Say Their Names: Rename UCLA's Campbell Hall
Over fifty years ago two Black UCLA students -- John Huggins Jr. and Alprentice "Bunchy" Carter -- were assassinated on the UCLA campus in Campbell Hall during a meeting to decide the future of the Black Students Union. These young men, both leading lights of the Los Angeles chapter of the Black Panther Party, had been specifically recruited by the university for what was then called the High Potential Program (now the Academic Advancement Program).
For over five decades students, alumni, faculty members, and staff have asked the university administration to formally acknowledge these young men and their deaths by giving their names to the building in which they died. And for five decades, the administration has resisted these efforts. Unlike Kent State, Berkeley and other schools and universities who have found ways to memorialize activist students who have died on campus, this piece of UCLA's radical Black history has been rendered invisible because it continues to be understood only within a racist framework by the university -- something that is best forgotten. The time is now for the university to officially recognize and honor the deaths of two UCLA students who died dedicating their lives to advancing racial justice. Thus, we are asking the UCLA administration to remember and honor this piece of UCLA's collective history by renaming the building in which they died to Carter-Huggins Hall.
Why is this important?
The renaming of Campbell Hall (which now houses the Academic Advancement Program which has, over the years, served thousands of students of color) would offer at least a small gesture of respect towards Carter and Huggins, two promising young Black activists cut down in their prime. They died while working toward a future for Black students on campus. Since their deaths and the university's continued deafening silence on the issue, UCLA has not widened the "circle of we" to include Black students. Today only 3.0% of UCLA students are Black. Of those, 65% of Black male students are athletes. Had Bunchy Carter and John Huggins lived and had the upheavals of the 60s and 70s yielded the kind of radical correction which they were fighting for, the University would be a very different place today. It is time to finally acknowledge these students and Say Their Names!