ASU Students React to President On Administrative Leave


By Ellis Eskew

A big shakeup at Alabama State University -- president Joseph Silver has been put on administrative leave with pay. Students are not happy about it.

Alabama State students lined the halls of the Acadome Monday night in support of their president.

"Dr. Silver!! Dr. Silver!! Dr. Silver!!," they chanted.

The chants came shortly after the board's decision to put Joseph H. Silver on administrative leave with pay.

But Silver says he did nothing wrong.

"I have stumbled on something and I was asked to back off. I didn't. This is my present," he told CBS 8 News.

During the past two months as president Silver says he asked the board about how resources were being spent.

Silver would not go into further detail.

The board put state representative John Knight, who is executive vice president and chief operating officer at ASU, in charge of day to day operations.

Silver says that is not possible.

"This thing that he's going to be in charge of day to day is not relevant because I fired him earlier today," said Silver.

The students say they will fight back for Silver's job.

"President Silver has come in and shown that he cares about the student population. He has come in and shown that we are going to get the respect we deserve. President Silver has done nothing wrong but outreach for students here at Alabama State University," said ASU student Victoria Haywood.

The students followed Silver outside to the steps of the Acadome where he addressed the crowd.

"I think they know there is no reason for me to step down other than the fact that I have raised a few questions about how resources are spent here it's not all for students," said Silver.

"I think it's crazy. He has taken the time to really get to know us... it's ridiculous," said ASU student Tiara Smith.

The students are planning to meet Tuesday at 11am at the Abernathy Building to discuss how they will move forward with a petition for the board.

The full board of trustees will meet Thursday at 1pm.

John Knight was not available for comment.