Possible disruption from protesters keeps UNC Board of Governors from meeting in Asheville

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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UNC Asheville’s chancellor announced today that the UNC Board of Governors meeting, planning for the UNCA campus on Friday, has been cancelled for fear of disruption caused by “potential large-scale protests.” Chancellor Mary Grant, who made the announcement Monday afternoon, said that new UNC system President Margaret Spellings still plans to visit the UNCA campus this week. The visit is scheduled for Wednesday.

In January, UNC Chapel Hill student protesters disrupted a meeting of the Board of Governors. Several students were arrested. The protesters have cited several issues that they say demand attention: threats to funding historically black colleges in North Carolina, cuts to programs in the humanities while several chancellors received raises and a lack of transparency in the search for Spellings are a few, according to the Daily Tar Heel. (More background here from the News and Observer.)

Here’s the communication from Grant to UNCA:

Campus community,

Over the weekend, we have been in consultation with our colleagues at UNC General Administration about potential large-scale protests from off-campus groups on Thursday and Friday during the Board of Governors meeting.

Based on these conversations, a decision has been made to move the Board meeting to General Administration offices in Chapel Hill, which will not result in campus disruption at a critical time in the academic year.

I am very pleased, however, to let you know that President Spellings’ visit will continue as planned and we look forward to welcoming her to campus on Wednesday of this week. During her visit, she will have an opportunity to meet with faculty, staff and students as planned.

I appreciate all of the energy and attention that has gone into preparing for the Board of Governors meeting and campus visit. I look forward to having an opportunity to welcome board members to campus at another time so they can learn first-hand about all of the incredible work being done here at North Carolina’s Liberal Arts university.


Mary K. Grant, Ph.D.
University of North Carolina at Asheville
828 251-6500

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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  1. Tim Peck April 18, 2016

    “I’ll take that as a ‘yes’.”

    Just as predicted: nothing from the blippet. Just more mealy-mouthed gibberish from the lost. You are doing progressives a solid.

  2. John April 15, 2016

    Better yet, why are these students not protesting the millions of dollars UNC-CH has spent defending itself from the NCAA/SACS investigation into its academic scandal that went on for over 20 years? That money would have paid for a lot of scholarships.

  3. Tim Peck April 15, 2016

    “On Dan Forest’s payroll now, Mouthpiece?”

    Better that than on Holly Jones’.

    And name-calling? Really? I expected better from you, Mr. Blippet. (not really)

    1. luther blissett April 15, 2016

      I’ll take that as a ‘yes’. You’d think that Mouthpiece’s multi-year abject losing record would make GOP pols wary of flushing campaign cash down the peckhole.

      1. Huh April 16, 2016

        The guy doesn’t even live in NC, Luther.

  4. Unaffiliated Voter April 14, 2016

    so WHY do we NEVER hear these young ‘scholars’ yelling about the outrageous salaries the UNC faculty and staff COMMAND? THEY are a BIG part of the problem for all the excesses at UNC. The whole system is a bloated corrupt criminal mess. Sick of UNC.

    Mary Grant should be embarrassed to show her face in NC with her bloated salary of $175,000! SHAME on her and all the others EXPECTING such ridiculous salaries!

  5. Tim Peck April 12, 2016

    On March 7, Lieutenant Governor Dan Forest announced that he would propose a bill be introduced this year that he’s calling the “Campus Free Expression Act.” The legislation would require a discipline policy for any students who interrupt the free expression of others. Forest is working on a draft of the bill with the help of Stanley Kurtz, senior fellow at the Washington, D.C.-based Ethics and Public Policy Center, that would instruct the University of North Carolina’s Board of Governors to do the following:

    Craft a systemwide policy that unmistakably affirms the value of free expression and that would impose harsh penalties, including expulsion, on students, staff and faculty members who engage in conscious acts aimed at obstructing the free speech rights of others by disrupting classes, public meetings or events;
    To issue a statement that defines and defends the policy of institutional neutrality on the issues of the day;
    To require that freshman orientation include a session on the promotion of free expression on campus;
    To create a Committee on Free Expression that issues status reports to the legislature annually…


  6. Tim Peck April 12, 2016

    “Killing the First Amendment to save the First Amendment?”

    What an upside-down definition of free speech you must have. I hope it’s not this:

    1. Sulla Felix April 12, 2016

      Yeah, that’s it entirely. Good lord. If you were still in college would YOU want a bunch of people from outside the uni to be protesting on campus during finals? I mean, seriously, GTFU.

  7. jtroop April 11, 2016

    To think that off-campus groups would scare that poor, right-wing political shill and her group of stooges away like that…. How dare anyone demonstrate their displeasure with a someone actively aiming to tear down their academic institution on behalf of ALEC!!! What has the world come to?

    1. Sulla Felix April 12, 2016

      Right wing? Man, the people of Asheville get dumber as the years go by. Maybe it’s time you get rid of that rectal-cranial inversion and start thinking for yourself.

  8. Tim Peck April 11, 2016

    We can take care of that.

    “Lt. Gov. Dan Forest will be turning his attention to a Campus Free Expression Act meant to protect free speech on UNC system campuses, strike down restrictive speech codes, and punish those who attempt to stifle public discourse. Forest spokesman Jamey Falkenbury said the bill would be ready to file during the first week of the regular legislative session, which opens April 25.”

    “Students could face punishment, including the possibility of expulsion, for engaging in conscious acts stifling the First Amendment rights of others, and the UNC system would be required to implement free speech rules, under a plan Lt. Gov. Dan Forest hopes to turn into law.”

    1. Hauntedheadnc April 11, 2016

      Killing the First Amendment to save the First Amendment?

      What an astonishingly unsurprising Orwellian tactic! And Moffitt’s dancing goblin is in full support… Why, I’m shocked. Shocked!

    2. luther blissett April 12, 2016

      On Dan Forest’s payroll now, Mouthpiece?


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