The First Amendment of the United States of America’s Constitution provides protection for free speech and expression of self, as long as nobody else is being physically harmed, more or less. One of the practical provisions of this article is the ability of United States citizens and residents to peacefully protest.
A large group of students at Howard University banded together on Friday, March 30, 2018, at the HBCU’s – Historically Black College or University – lead administration building.
While it’s comforting to know that being able to protest against things unjust and unfair is protected legally, knowing that several student workers within ranks of the school’s administration unlawfully received excessive financial aid is alarming.
So what happened to cause the 350-odd protestors to join forces against the normal operation of Howard University’s administration?
Over the past nine years, countless university employees-cum-students were given lowered tuition for working for Howard University’s ranks – which is supposed to be the sole form of compensation for their efforts – alongside government grants. Together, these two forms of compensation actually paid students to work at the university while attending school.
This situation wouldn’t be so big of a deal if Howard University’s standard undergraduate tuition wasn’t $23,970. That’s unarguably a lot of money just to go to college, and to think that federal funding supposed to go to students who are most deserving or in need of such funding wasn’t given to such groups is nothing short of alarming.
Thus far, six people have been fired from Howard University’s ranks, all of whom were directly involved in not reporting such issues.
From 2007 to 2016, an independent auditor of schools and government bodies – of which Howard University falls under the wide-ranging umbrella of – found that some university workers were blatantly allowed to “double-dip” in the money-green buckets of tuition remission and federal grants, something that isn’t allowed even for the most outstanding of students.
Even though this audit report was published several months ago, news of the report didn’t break until earlier this week, on Tuesday, March 27, 2018. An outside report containing official documentation from the nonprofit audit of Howard University was leaked to Medium earlier this week, though the original post has been deleted since then.
Countless copies are currently circulating the Internet.
The group of students occupying Howard University’s administration building is named Resist HU.