© 2024 KLCC

136 W 8th Ave
Eugene OR 97401

Contact Us

FCC Applications
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

UO President responds to encampment’s demands

Tents on UO’s Eugene campus.
Nathan Wilk
There were approximately 80 tents at the encampment as of early Wednesday evening.

University of Oregon President John Karl Scholz has responded to the demands of the student encampment on the school’s Eugene campus.

Pro-Palestinian student groups have been occupying a lawn in front of the Knight Library since Monday morning. They want the university and its foundation to cut financial ties with Israel, and end its partnerships with Israeli universities.

Scholz rejected those requests at a university Senate meeting Wednesday.

“Academic boycotts are antithetical to the free exchange of ideas and creation of scholarship, which is the core purpose of the university,” said Scholz. “Boycotts could allow any single viewpoint to unilaterally limit scholarly collaboration and understanding across countries.”

Scholz argued it’s the government’s role to sanction a foreign nation, not a university’s.

He also said he trusts UO’s Foundation to make forward-looking investments in line with their ethical guidelines, and will not ask them to deviate from their responsibilities.

Encampment leaders responded Wednesday evening in a letter to President Scholz. In it, they compared their request to historical boycotts against South African apartheid and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

"By calling for the UO to adopt a targeted [Boycott-Divest-Sanction] campaign, we are upholding our moral responsibility to Palestinians and a powerful legacy of student-led struggles for freedom," the letter said.

The leaders wrote that divestment is one of the encampment's core demands, and they will not disband until the administration responds with an actionable plan.

Nathan Wilk joined the KLCC News Team in 2022. He is a graduate from the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication. Born in Portland, Wilk began working in radio at a young age, serving as a DJ and public affairs host across Oregon.
Related Content