© 2023 WRVO Public Media
NPR News for Central New York
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

APM Reports - 'Black at Mizzou: Confronting race on campus'

American Public Media

In 2015, Lauren Brown left her mostly black neighborhood in Chicago for the University of Missouri. Moving to a predominantly white college was a huge shock, made even more difficult by the racial harassment she faced that fall. That same semester, the campus erupted in protests that made international news after several instances of racial harassment set off a movement led by black students to change the school.

Those protests inspired movements on college campuses across the country, but few of them got as much media coverage as the University of Missouri. News reports seemed to treat the racism that black students endured at Mizzou as an aberration, but Lauren and other black students knew that it wasn't just a recent spate of racist incidents that lead to the student uprisings -- it was years and years of them. In this documentary, we learn about the long history of student activism and demands for change that set the stage for the protests at Missouri. The only way to really understand what has changed, and what bound black students together in the fight for change, is to understand what students call "Black Mizzou." Lauren is our guide to this campus within a campus that was fundamental to the 2015 movement at the University of Missouri, to Lauren's decision to ultimately stay and graduate from the school and to holding administrators accountable for change today.

This program is the last part of a series on education from APM Reports that has aired for three weeks in September on Public Radio Presents. Listen this Sunday, September 27 at 7 p.m.