MOUNT PLEASANT (WJRT) (11/08/18) - Students at Central Michigan University gathered for a peaceful protest Thursday evening after a racist message was written on a whiteboard outside the door of three African American students who live on campus.
On the sidewalk, students wrote messages like, "Love is louder than hate” outside of Sweeney Hall, where the incident took place.
"None of us really came to a conclusion about how we felt or how we could handle it because how do you handle a thing like that? I've never experienced blatant racism before," said Rebecca Rose Mims, a sophomore.
She and her two roommates are still processing being on the receiving end of a hateful message.
CMU police have referred the investigation to the office of Civil Rights and Institutional Equity.
Speaking at the protest, CMU President Bob Davies apologized for what happened.
“I'm sorry that you came home and saw those pitiful words," he told the students.
Davies said bigotry, racism and misogyny will not be tolerated.
"We are looking at every possible angle to find out who did they and why they did this,” said Davies. “Expulsion is part of the discussion."
Sophomore Yasmeen Duncan was encouraged by the show of support.
"Last night I didn't feel like I belonged here," she said. "Today, seeing all these people here, it makes my heart so happy."
The CMU chapter of the NAACP, which hosted the gathering, shared a list of demands, including mandatory race and ethnicity sensitivity training, cameras in residence halls and more support for students from under represented backgrounds.
Mims says CMU is still her home.
“I'm not going to let this stop me from being the person that I am and seeing the Central Michigan that I've always wanted to see here," she said.