Manhattanville College’s mission is to educate students to be ethical and socially- responsible leaders in a global community—a statement that all Valiants are expected to adhere by. The mission statement has been in effect since the College was founded in 1841.
On Mar. 1, 2017, the President’s Office wrote to the Manhattanville College Community informing them of a recent charge by the Harrison Police Department of a Manhattanville student. This student was charged with aggravated harassment in the first degree as a hate crime, a class E felony. The student was arrested based on their alleged involvement in the placing of a swastika on a student’s door in a residence hall, according to the email.
The contents of the statement communicated that under no circumstances will any hate crime be tolerated.
“There will always be people, even in a campus community, who feel the need to attack others in such a way. The critical question here is what are we going to do about it?” said President Michael Geisler in the statement.
The College stresses the importance of bringing any hateful or malicious act(s) to the attention of a College official.
“If you see something or if you know of an incident; then you need to say something.” said Dean Sharlise Smith- Rodriguez. “We have a responsibility to ourselves, and to each other to report these incidents in order to keep our community welcoming and safe for all of us.”
The vandalism on campus has been ongoing. Not only is it a constant threat, but a distraction to those who are fully engulfed in their studies here at the College. They will not be taken lightly for they are extremely painful for the individual(s) being targeted.
“A hate crime is often misunderstood as being simply a prank in very bad taste or a sign of disrespect. This is a dangerous misconception. Hate crimes are called ‘hate crimes’ for a reason,” said President Geisler.
Students are urged to review the Student Code of Conduct Handbook which explains that students are upstanding citizens and part of a community. Manhattanville belongs to every Valiant, and there is no excuse for cultivating a respectful community culture.
“A hate crime says to the victim: You have no right to exist.” said President Geisler.
The resolution to this incident extends itself to the community’s degree of action when faced with hate crimes. Students are strongly urged to report future incidents.