University of Missouri system president Tim Wolfe announced Monday that he would resign, amid calls from students, faculty and lawmakers for him to step down.
Over the weekend, more than 30 players on the Mizzou football team announced they refused to play or practice until Wolfe resigned. In addition, several graduate students and faculty staged a walk out on Monday, pressureing Wolfe to resign because of how he has ineffectively handled racial tensions on campus.
The university’s governing body, the Board of Curators, met in an emergency meeting Monday to discuss how to handle the situation as the student government also issued a statement calling for Wolfe to resign.
Wolfe said at a press conference announcing his resignation this morning that his decision “comes from love.”
“The frustration and anger that I see is clear, real, and I don’t doubt it for a second,” he said. “I take full responsibility for this frustration. I take full responsibly for the inaction that has occurred. I’d ask everybody, from students and faculty and friends, to use my resignations to heal and start talking again, to make the changes necessary.”
Jonathan Butler, a black graduate student who began a hunger strike on Nov. 2 in protest of racial problems at the university, announced Monday via Twitter that his strike was over. The team also announced Monday that they will play this weekend’s game against BYU now that Wolfe is gone.
Congrats to the Mizzou players, coaches, Jonathan Butler and the hundreds of other Mizzou students and faculty members taking a stand. You did it! Getting Wolfe to resign was just one of the demands from the protest. You can read the full list of demands below.
Here’s the list in its entirety:
1. We demand that University of Missouri System President, Tim Wolfe, writes a hand-written apology to Concerned Student 1-9-5-0 demonstrators and holds a press conference in the Mizzou Student Center reading the letter. In the letter and at the press conference, Tim Wolfe must acknowledge his white privilege, recognize that systems of oppression exits, and provide a verbal commitment to fulfilling Concerned Student 1-9-5-0 demands. We want Tim Wolfe to admits his gross negligence, allowing his driver to hit one of the demonstrators, consenting to the physical violence of bystanders, and lastly refusing to intervene when Columbia Police Department used excessive force with demonstrators.
2. We demand the immediate removal of Tim Wolfe as UM system president. After his removal, a new amendment to thd UM system policies must be established to have all future UM system president and Chancellor positions be selected by a collective of students, staff, and faculty of diverse backgrounds.
3. We demand that the University of Missouri meets the Legion of Black Collegians’ demands that were presented in the 1969 for the betterment of the black community.
4. We demand that the University of Missouri creates and enforces comprehensive racial awareness and inclusion curriculum throughout all campus departments and units, mandatory for all students, faculty, staff and administration. This curriculum must be vetted, maintained, and overseen by a board comprised of students, staff and faculty of color.
5. We demand that by the academic year 2017-18, the University of Missouri increases the percentage of black faculty and staff members campus-wide by 10 percent.
6. We demand that the University of Missouri composes a strategic 10-year plan on May, 1 2016 that will increase retention rates for marginalized students, sustain diversity curriculum and training, and promote a more safe and inclusive campus.
7. We demand that the University of Missouri increases funding and resources for the University of Missouri Counseling Center for the purpose of hiring additional mental health professionals, particularly those of color, boosting mental health outreach and programming across campus, increasing campus-wide awareness and visibility of the counseling center, and reducing lengthy wait times for prospective clients.
8. We demand that the University of Missouri increases funding, resources and personnel for the social justice centers on campus for the purpose of hiring additional professionals, particularly those of color, boosting outreach and programming across campus and increasing campus-wide awareness and visibility.