Tom Rochon, Ithaca College's president. (Courtesy of Adam Baker of Ithaca College)

ITHACA, N.Y. — Students took over the stage while Ithaca College President Tom Rochon spoke at an event Tuesday night.

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The event — Addressing Community Action on Racism and Cultural Bias — happened at 5 p.m. at the Glazer Arena of the A&E Center.

In an email distributed college-wide by administrators, officials said, “As the leadership of the college and its constituent bodies, we agree that now is the time for IC to focus its efforts on actions that will lead to a significant advancement in the campus climate for diversity and inclusion.”

Tom Rochon, Ithaca College’s president. (Courtesy of Adam Baker of Ithaca College)
Tom Rochon, Ithaca College’s president. (Courtesy of Adam Baker of Ithaca College)

During the event, students overtook the stage while Rochon was speaking, leading to hundreds of people walking out of arena in protest of Rochon’s leadership, according to social media posts by The Ithacan. 

Footage from the event indicates that as students left, the shouted, “Tom Rochon — No confidence!”

Monday night, the Student Government Association unanimously decided to launch a vote on the president’s confidence.

Related: Student gov. calls for no confidence vote against Ithaca College president

SGA President Dom Recckio said Tuesday, “There have been a ton of issues on campus this year that have gone, not entirely unaddressed, but unaddressed in the way students like and are comfortable with.”

The organization listed several grievances against Rochon including “unstable” leadership within the college’s administration, claims of student exclusion from the college’s development plans, and claims of racism, discrimination and lack of diversity at the college. 

At least some students who took the stage were reportedly part of an organization called People of Color at Ithaca College.  A representative from the organization declined to comment about the incident Wednesday. 

Recckio said students will have 26 days to vote on the issue after receiving the link to do so via email on Nov. 4.

The results of the vote will be made public on Nov. 30.

Dave Maley, a spokesperson for IC, said the college was declining to comment about the no confidence vote. He could not be reached by deadline Wednesday.

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Jolene Almendarez

Jolene Almendarez is Managing Editor at The Ithaca Voice. She can be reached at jalmendarez@ithacavoice.com; you can learn more about her at the links in the top right of this box.