More than 100 students marched across Binghamton University’s campus on Thursday to show support and stand in solidarity with protesters at the University of Missouri and those facing discrimination around the country.

Organized by senior Tiana Camacho, the march began at the Pegasus statue and continued into Lecture Hall, across the Spine, through the Marketplace and ended in the Old Union. After the protesters arrived in the Tillman Lobby, a five-minute silence was observed.

“The goal of this march is to raise awareness, not just about the issues at the University of Missouri, but about racism and microaggressions on college campuses as a whole,” Camacho said. “These create unsafe spaces for students of color and students that have differing sexual orientations on campus, so that they feel that they can come to this space and be educated.”

Camacho, who is majoring in theatre, said the march was a preemptive measure to hopefully draw attention to issues on campus before they escalate.

“Threats against students of color are never okay,” she said. “Threats against students of different sexual orientations and gender identities are never okay. It is very important to keep things in check, keep things organized, so that we can address things like this before they explode at this campus like they did at the University of Missouri.”

Toivo Asheeke, a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate studying sociology, spoke alongside Camacho at the opening of the march. He called for all those in attendance to stand up against discrimination, and to ask their peers to do the same.

“It is not new,” Asheeke said. “It is happening across the United States. Black and Latino students are not feeling safe. It is on us to define the campus we want to see. We have to go out and make the definition of the University we wish to live in.”

The march began at 1:15 p.m. Participants chanted “the students, united, will never be defeated” while walking through the Lecture Hall building hallway. Some professors closed doors to their classrooms, but many marchers attempted to hold them open so that students inside could hear their message and witness the rally.

Faculty members like Sean Massey, a BU women, gender and sexuality studies professor, were also in the crowd. Massey was teaching at the time of the march, and brought his class, LGBTQ history, to the event.

“The class is studying social activism and civil disobedience and social justice around the LGBTQ community and communities of color as well,” Massey explained. “This is a national movement … it seemed important for my students who are learning about this historically to at least be witnesses to something happening in their own lives.”

Samiyah Small, a senior double-majoring in English and cinema, attended the march. She said that the rally was necessary to address injustices currently happening at the University of Missouri and at BU.

“At Missouri they’re having death threats sent to them,” Small said. “I don’t know what I would do if that happened. It’s horrifying. I shouldn’t have to feel horrified when I’m trying to get the education that I need.”

Small also said that while she hopes the administration will take notice of the protesters, she does not have high expectations that any immediate changes will happen.

“I know that the administration will have a scripted response to this,” Small said. “I’m expecting that. At the same time, I don’t care about what they have to say. From what I’ve seen so far, they’re not going to do anything.”

BU President Harvey Stenger said in a statement to Pipe Dream that he acknowledges the need for continued growth on campus, and that any students with concerns should contact the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion or email him directly.

“We support students’ right to demonstrate and express their opinions accordingly,” Stenger said. “As we consider the concerns raised at the University of Missouri, Ithaca College, Yale and other college campuses, we must be steadfast in our efforts to ensure that we create and sustain a campus that is welcoming and respectful of all persons regardless of identity. There is always more to be done and we remain open to your suggestions and to continuing dialogue on this important aspect of our University.”

Camacho posed a final message at the rally’s conclusion before the marchers dispersed.

“It is crucial that we all stick together,” she said. “We cannot be divided on this issue and allow things to escalate. Please remember why you are here. Please remember why you are here today. We promote visibility on this campus and say that we are here, we are human and we do not stand for this.”