UL Students’ Violence Stalls Academic Activities Again

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Group of UL students leaving campus following the disruption of classes.jpg

Following the violent disruption of classes by students sometime last October, there were a few weeks of normal activities on the campus of the University of Liberia; much to the chagrin (disappointment) of many, the past repeated itself Monday, November 18, when some students once again disrupted classes on the Fendell campus causing all activities to come to a standstill.

The violent disruption came on the day the University was to commence its mid-term examination after two months of teaching.

The group of students, who roamed the campus from building to building insulting the Vice president for Academic Affairs & Provost and the rest of the administrative staff, became violent on the grounds that they had just completed their registration process and the institution was administering mid-term exams.

The controversial Student Government Acting President, Anthony Williams, alleged in a live broadcast following the violent disruption of classes by students this October that the administration was in error to schedule mid-term exams right after students have completed their ‘Add and Drop,’ and that they cannot honor the scheduled examination.

Add and Drop period is a time where students, who want to increase or decrease their credit hours audit classes they want to add by sitting in those classes during their lectures and stop attending those classes they prefer to drop, getting them off of their control sheet in the Electronic Data Processing (EDP) room.

Following the disruption of classes last October for not completing registration in a given time, the UL Administration gave a grace period of one-week beginning November 2 to the 9th for registration process to come to an end.

Administration, in a release, also notified the student that mid-term was to commence on the 18th to the 22nd.

The Acting Student Government’s President said it was not fair for the administration to begin the test when students were just completing their process and some still had yet to complete it (the process).

Speaking to the Daily Observer in a brief interview on the Fendell Campus, the Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost, Dr. Wede Elliott-Brownell, said as far as record is concerned; over 29,000 students have completed registration and have been attending classes.

She said those carrying on the disturbances are just a few students who do not want to take the mid-term.

Madam Brownell noted that the mid-term stands and there is no change despite violent actions by students.

She said if there were to be any change it would come from UL’s President, Dr. Emmet A. Dennis, when he returns to the country a day or two from now.

Other students, who have been attending classes saw this as violation of their rights.

According to many students interviewed during the latest disruption on Fendell Campus, they have paid their money and have the right to learn, yet their learning process is constantly being disrupted by their violent classmates.

“Should their (non-violent students) interest be above the interest of the university or should aggrieved students’ decision rule the university’s policy?” some argued as they dispersed.

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