Students at Howard University in Washington D.C. organized and carried out a sit-in on March 29, after it was revealed that their university had misappropriated financial aid money from 2007 to 2016.
The sit-in was organized by student lead group HU Resist. Students occupied the university administration building for nine days total.
As a result of their persistence, HU Resist and Howard peers were able to incite some change within the administration and school policies. The university will now work to provide housing for students under the age of 21. Howard has extended their 2018 housing deposit deadline, and they will strategize ways to keep tuition reasonable.
But it is not just reformed that the students gained. They also gained influence. Because of the sit-in, Howard University has authorized student-administration task forces to be created to address issues with topics like sexual assault, mental health, and conflict resolution. The students will also be able to appoint a graduate representative to report to the Vice President of Student Affairs and create an open flow between students and university leadership.
Howard’s president, Wayne A.I. Frederick had this to say about the sit-in: “I appreciate what they have done to bring this community together. There’s no university without its students and the students must be the primary focus of the university.”