MSA letter to curators calls for Wolfe’s removal

“He has not only enabled a culture of racism since the start of his tenure in 2012, but blatantly ignored and disrespected the concerns of students,” the letter reads.

The Missouri Students Association Executive Cabinet released a letter addressed to the UM System Board of Curators around 8:15 a.m. Monday formally demanding the immediate removal of UM System President Tim Wolfe.

The letter, which was tweeted by MSA, acknowledges the “tumultuous” campus climate at MU and Wolfe’s failed leadership.

“While we recognize that the burden of systemic oppression does not fall entirely on his shoulders, as the leader of this system it is his sole prerogative to listen and respond to students,” the letter reads. “He has failed in this completely.”

In addition to addressing the administration, the letter also discusses the “suffering” academic careers of MU students.

“Every student’s ability to learn is now affected and threatened by the campus climate,” it reads. “While no isolated incident led to this moment, the continued offenses at the University of Missouri have accumulated into irreparable damage to the student experience.”

The letter was released after MSA Executive Cabinet members met early Monday morning. It is signed by MSA President Payton Head, vice president Brenda Smith-Lezama, secretary of auxiliaries Thessean Earl, communication director David Wallace, interim chief of staff Sophie Dieckhaus, director of student activities Maiya Putman and director of student services Samantha Franks.

As of 9 a.m. Monday, graduate student Jonathan Butler has been on a hunger strike for one week protesting for Wolfe’s removal. The letter was published after Wolfe released a statement Sunday and the football players announced their boycott Saturday night. At 10 a.m., the UM System Board of Curators is scheduled to meet to discuss the situation.

Update: The Missouri Students Association Executive Cabinet issued a statement at 1:01 pm regarding former UM System President Tim Wolfe’s resignation.

“The academic environment (at MU) has been compromised for many students due to a lack of action from from University of Missouri leadership,” the statement read. “The resignation of Tim Wolfe is only the first of many actions that need to take place.”

The statement also called for faculty and staff to support the “emotional well-being” of students during this time.

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