Black on Campus: An American University Story

Bananas with “AKA Free” written on them were found hanging from nooses on American University’s campus after the student government voted in its first black woman Taylor Dumpson (a member of the AKA sorority) as president. 

But Black students have been terrorized at predominantly white colleges for years. I remember being at Penn State in the’90s, and nooses were found hanging from the door of two friends who were roommates in the boys dorm. We were only 18. Freshman. Shook by it all. I was the rare black member of the student government and helped create the Diversity Union so we could come together and just be together. As black kids, we didn’t really know what we needed. But we instinctively knew we needed support to deal with the racism. I ended up transferring to a HBCU after my freshman year. I always said it was because of my major that I transferred to Hampton. I wanted to be on the radio and play the black music we couldn’t find in the boonies of Central PA. But today, reading this story, I had a flashback and suddenly realized it was likely those nooses that heavily influenced my decision to leave. #BlackOnCampus

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