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Protester David Shapiro sits in President Grayson Kirk's chair during the 1968 protests

So many protests to choose from...


The Bonus Army marches down Broadway
  • 1930s: Bonus Army marches
  • Late 1930s: Anti-war rallies preceding World War II


Mathematics Hall is "liberated" during the 1968 protests
  • April 23 - 30, 1968: The protest to end all protests. Not really. The 1968 protests surrounded the construction of the Morningside Park Gymnasium, Government funded science research, and CIA recruitment on campus. It ends with the bloody removal of students from five occupied buildings and a deeply damaged, divided campus.


  • 1970: Black students take over ROTC lounge. Administration agrees to make it the Malcolm X Lounge. In the spring, a massive student strike occurs in response to the bombing of Cambodia.
  • 1972: Anti-war student strike, including 17-day occupation of Lewisohn Hall[1]; Latino students protest for Latino Studies.
  • 1985: Renewed anti-apartheid protests culminate in a takeover of Hamilton. Administration agrees to fully divest, although they didn't do so fully until 1991.
  • 1992: Students again take over Hamilton Hall, protesting Columbia's plans to turn the Audubon Ballroom, the site of Malcolm X's assassination, into a biomedical research facility
  • 1996: Students go on a hunger strike, and occupy Hamilton for the establishment of an Ethnic Studies Department. Three years later they get a center with no hiring power
  • 2000: Hundreds of students march on a hearing by the University Senate's Task Force on reviewing the Sexual Misconduct Policy and deliver 1,800 petitions calling for change.

Since 2000

Pro-Iraq War demonstration, 2003
  • Spring 2008: Protest coinciding with the Fifth Anniversary of the Iraq War

Faculty protests


Ongoing community protests

  • Since 1940s: Lots of tenant protests over Columbia evictions. Today, these are primarily related to the Manhattanville expansion controversy.


  1. [1];[2] - see generally spectator archives April 18, 1972 through May 15.