Xavier SGA President to Testify Before Federal Committee
Emmanuel Ukot, president of Xavier University of Louisiana’s Student Government Association, will present virtually before the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday, March 17, 2022, at 9 a.m. as part of the “HBCUs at Risk: Examining Federal Support for Historically Black Colleges and Universities” committee.
Ukot, a graduating senior majoring in business management, will represent the Xavier University student body as he testifies before the House of Representatives regarding recent bomb threats Xavier University of Louisiana and other Historically Black Colleges and Universities have received. The hearing will investigate ways the federal government can aid in protecting students’ safety and improve campus security to prevent domestic terrorism.
“I plan to highlight the importance of HBCUs, their impact on students, and how domestic terroristic threats like the bomb threats we received not only destabilize students and can inhibit our academic performance,” Ukot said. “But [also how] it speaks to a larger societal issue where racially motivated acts such as this further sow into the disunity we see in society when it comes to race in America.”
Xavier University received two bomb threats in 2022. The first was in January and the second in February on the first day of Black History Month. More than 20 other HBCUs across five states have received threats this year. Some continue to deal with menacing messages and threats. On Feb. 10, Xavier University President Dr. Reynold Verret testified on Capitol Hill before the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions to discuss the bomb threats and advocate to bridge the gap in disparities amongst minority healthcare workers.
“I am appreciative of the opportunity to provide an intimate perspective of how my university – and HBCUs across the nation – cultivate the leaders and change agents of tomorrow,” Ukot said. “I hope that my testimony pushes Congress to support our HBCUs in the face of these threats to our safety.”