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U of Minn. Students Call for Resignation of Regent | Inside Higher Ed

Student leaders at the University of Minnesota called for Regent Steve Sviggum to resign Wednesday after he questioned whether the institution’s Morris campus had become “too diverse,” even after he apologized, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

The students voiced concerns in an open letter to Sviggum about whether his presence on the Board of Regents would create a hostile attitude toward diversity and scare prospective students from attending one of the five campuses at the university.

During a public meeting in October, Sviggum asked if it was possible the Morris campus had become “too diverse” and said he was speaking from a “marketing standpoint.” He issued a public apology after receiving backlash from students, faculty and some fellow regents.

Sviggum met with the student leaders last month at the Morris campus to discuss how diversity is a campus strength. He left the students convinced his prior apology was not sincere after the meeting, according to MPR News.

“Regent Sviggum didn’t seem to internalize anything we told him during that meeting. He had an opportunity to learn from, or at least directly apologize for his mistakes, and he didn’t do either,” Hal Johnson, a Morris student representative to the Board of Regents, said in a statement Wednesday after the Sviggum meeting.

Sviggum said he stepped down from his position as vice chair of the board of regents but would remain on the board until his term expires next year, according to MPR News.

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