SUNY student leaders support protest rights

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The Student Assembly of the State University of New York strongly supports the decision by universities across the country, including SUNY Oswego, to reassure prospective applicants that their participation in peaceful protest will not jeopardize their chances at admission.

“I believe we in SUNY need to stand by our prospective students who exercise their right to freedom of expression. These future agents of change should be welcome on all of our campuses,” said Dalton Bisson, Student Government President at the State University of New York at Oswego.

The students of the State University of New York are inspired by the advocacy and courage of the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School who have redirected the spotlight placed on their community by tragedy into an overdue call for action. Neither these brave students – nor the millions of students around the country who have joined with them – should have to fear that their academic success will be endangered by the passionate exercise of their first amendment rights.

“We need action – and if this generation of leaders won’t engage, the next will,” said Student Assembly President and SUNY Trustee Marc J. Cohen. “The students of SUNY stand with the strong young leaders marching across the country, advocating for reforms which would make our classrooms and communities safer. It is critical that SUNY system and each individual campus, evaluate the implementation of policies which would prohibit any admission penalties for students engaging in peaceful, constructive protests.”

The Student Assembly strongly urges all colleges and universities in the State of New York and around the country to follow SUNY Oswego’s example and adopt an admissions policy that does not penalize students for participation in peaceful protest and advocacy.