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Statement from Chancellor Kent Syverud
Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:
Last night, one of our African American students reported being subjected to a verbal racial epithet from a group of students and visitors to our campus. The location was on College Place. This report of an affront to our student’s—and our whole community’s—safety and well-being is the latest incident of several against Jews, Asians and African Americans. I am deeply angered by these events, including this latest incident.
All night, University leaders have been addressing these incidents. As to the College Place incident, Department of Public Safety (DPS) Chief Bobby Maldonado and his team have assembled substantial evidence, including security camera video, eyewitness accounts and interviews. The individuals involved have been identified and will be held appropriately accountable to the Code of Student Conduct and to the full extent of the law. We are working with the Syracuse Police Department, and we intend to bring this investigation to a swift and successful conclusion.
Some of the individuals involved are members and guests of a Syracuse University fraternity. That fraternity has been suspended pending the outcome of the investigation.
More importantly, it is my view that the safety and well-being of students on our campus requires stronger steps. As of 4 a.m. today, I have directed the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Affairs to suspend all social activities of fraternities on this campus for the remainder of the semester. While only one fraternity may have been involved in this particular incident, given recent history, all fraternities must come together with the University community to reflect upon how to prevent recurrence of such seriously troubling behavior.
DPS also continues to actively investigate the other incidents, particularly those involving racist graffiti and vandalism. A generous University donor has offered a reward for evidence that leads to the apprehension of the individual or individuals responsible for these heinous acts.
More details about the reward and further updates will be provided later today.
Chancellor and President