Students march for diversity

By on October 22, 2008

In an effort to combat acts of hatred at Quinnipiac, over 200 Quinnipiac students pledged to not speak for an entire day last Wednesday. Afterwards, about 20 of those students gathered and marched across campus, chanting anti-hatred sentiments.

“I marched because I believe Quinnipiac students are great students and care much more than people give them credit for,” sophomore Paden Livingston said. “The problem is most students don’t know a way of being heard and showing they care, which is another reason why I marched; to show students that they have more power and more of a voice than they think.”

Silence Oppression Day was part of QUnity week, formerly known as Diversity Week, which was held for the first time last year. Other events included a gathering at the Schweitzer Institute and the creation of a diversity quilt. Any student could make a patch for the quilt, which was later hung in the cafeteria.

Over four times as many students participated in Silence Oppression Day as last year and twice the amount of students marched at the end of the day.

Greg Mantolesky, the residence hall director for Hill-Complex, said that the events of Diversity Week are important because it makes students feel that there is a way they can help fight against oppression and hatred on campus.

Before the march, students gathered in Buckman Theater to speak out against hatred on campus. Afterwards, several residence hall directors handed out signs, and students were given sheets that listed chants.

The students marched past Commons and Village, all the way to Mountainview, then down Dorm Road. The march ended at “pride rock.”

They chanted slogans such as, “hey, hey, what do we say, diversity is here to stay” and “one, two, three, four, hate at QU is no more.”

While in general passersby were supportive, with passing cars honking and some students shouting their approval, some students did not prove to be as supportive of those marching. More than one bystander reacted negatively to the march, shouting things like “look at those weird people yelling!”

But this didn’t dampen the marchers’ spirits. Livingston voiced his feeling of optimism about Quinnipiac students, saying, “Without students there is no university and I believe Quinnipiac students are going to start standing up for what they believe in. Change is coming.”


About Matt Ciepielowski