Fall Convocation Kicks Off School Year At ASU


By Brittany Bivins

It's the start of a new year at Alabama State University, which has been facing some big challenges. Its former president left in January after accusing the school's CEO of financial misconduct.

Now the university is working to move forward.

At Thursday's annual Fall Convocation, Interim President William Harris took the podium. He was almost immediately interrupted by a student heckler, who began yelling, accusing the school of corruption.

The university has been facing accusations of misusing its money for several months. Former President Joseph Silver left in January after accusing the school's CEO John Knight of mishandling school funds, sparking student protest.

"It has a lot of controversy over the college and it made school a little tougher because people really didn't know what was going on," said Quadry Greasham, a student.

"As far as the students, it's brought a lot of tension between the students and staff I think," said sophomore Danielle Evans.

This year, the university says, it wants to highlight student achievement and erase those divisions.

"We can beat the hell out of the whole world. There's no place like it in the world. We have come through a lot of adversity in the past. This is just a little bit, but the foundation to build from where we are today is so much stronger than any of these others have been," said Harris.

Many freshman say they heard about the controversy last year, but it didn't change their decision to go to school at ASU.

"I still wanted to come here. I actually just looked past all of that. I knew there'd be better things after the situation was finished," said Quincy Wilder.

"It's a great time to be a hornet. I just feel like I need to come down because it's just like a first choice of mine. I just wanted to be here. This is great, the atmosphere, and I need to be here," said Todric Dale.

It's been about 9 months since former president Joseph Silver stepped down. The board of trustees is still searching for a permanent president for the university.


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