Colorado colleges assure students participating in gun control protests won’t affect admissions


Teens For Gun Reform hold protest at the White House following mass shooting in Parkland, Florida. (Photo by Zach Gibson/Getty Images)

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As some high school students face the threat of disciplinary action for participating in gun control demonstrations, dozens of colleges and universities are sending them a reassuring message: It won’t affect their chances of getting into their schools.

The message has been echoed by institutions across Colorado, including University of Colorado.

Nearly 50 schools, from Ivy Leaguers to public schools, have taken to social media over the past few days to reassure students that taking part would not jeopardize admissions consideration.

Yale University said on its Twitter account that it would not rescind admissions decisions regardless of any penalties imposed on students by high school administrators. Brown University’s admissions staff also promised no negative fallout for any applicants.

Several even applauded the teenagers’ activism, including Colorado State University, which said “Future Rams, you can rest assured that disciplinary action as a result of lawful, peaceful student activism will not impact your admission decision. CSU will continue to support students who choose to have an active voice in their community.”

Regis University in Denver tweeted that they are proud to stand with protestors at fellow colleges, tweeting, “Here at Regis, we teach civil discourse and activism. Student advocacy is a brave step towards justice. We are for and with students who choose to speak up, to participate and to stand for something.”

The university even called on students to vocalize their beliefs, encouraging them to use the hashtag #ThisIsRegis.

“Disciplinary action as a result of peaceful protest and student advocacy will not hinder your admission / enrollment to Regis University. Please share your stories with us. #thisisregis”

Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, tweeted, “Brandeis supports students’ right to stand up for their beliefs … Speak up, speak out.”

CU Denver tweeted a similar sentiment, saying, “If a student who is applying to our institution is suspended by their high school for practicing responsible citizenship by engaging in peaceful, meaningful protest on an issue of importance to them, it will not negatively impact their admission decision to @CUDenver.”

The Feb. 14 mass shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 people dead has sparked calls for walkouts, sit-ins and other actions on school campuses across the U.S.

A Texas school superintendent said this week that students faced a three-day, out-of-school suspension if they joined the protests. Needville ISD Superintendent Curtis Rhodes said the Houston-area district is sensitive to school violence, but is focused on education, not political protests.

A school district in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, initially said students would face some sort of punishment if they took part in a planned March 14 walkout, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Waukesha School District Superintendent Todd Gray later softened his stance, saying students could be excused with parental consent. Other school districts in the area have taken similar approaches.

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