A string of racist incidents at the University of Missouri has prompted students, football players and faculty to demand the removal of university president Tim Wolfe, who resigned from his position earlier this morning.
NBC News reports that in recent weeks, the campus has seen an influx of racist incidents—including racial harassment and a swastika drawn on a building with feces—but many say that the administration’s response has been lackluster at most. Graduate student Jonathan Butler began a hunger strike last week and the university’s football team has refused to play until Wolfe is ousted from his position.
“[Wolfe] has not only enabled a culture of racism since the start of his tenure in 2012, but blatantly ignored and disrespected the concerns of the students,” the Missouri Students Association wrote in a letter to the university board over the weekend.
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Speaking at a press conference today, Wolfe announced his resignation, adding that he took full responsbility for the frustration and inaction amongst students. He urged both students and administrators to “stop yelling” and to “stop intimidating each other.”
Graduate students, who recently organized a walkout, have referred to their efforts as #ConcernedStudent1950, named for the first year that the predominately White institute—which is about three hours west of Ferguson—was integrated.
Dozens of football players and members of the coaching staff joined the movement over the weekend. The team is refusing to practice and play in upcoming games, which could result in multimillion dollar losses and fines for the school.
Students have not yet issued a response to Wolfe’s resignation.