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Education News

UMass-Amherst Protesters Want New Seal And Mascot

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Kevin Roche
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UMass-Amherst
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Credit University of Massachusetts
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Some students at UMass Amherst want the university to change its mascot and seal, which they say are legacies of racism.

The students took part in a nationwide protest to improve conditions for university students. Among the UMass demands are more recruitment of students of color, gender-neutral bathrooms and replacement of the school’s official seal and mascot.

Student organizer Charlotte Kelly said the seal -- depicting a Native American holding tools -- is offensive.

“We do live in occupied, colonized land,” said Kelly. “This land had been a part of indigenous communities before it became the University of Massachusetts. And for us to be capitalizing and using a Native American figure as our seal seems really hurtful and violent.”

And Kelly said the Minuteman athletic mascot has its own problems related to colonization -- and gender.

UMass released a statement saying it welcomes student input and will consider the issues brought up by protesters. 

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