Statement from Eastern Michigan University regarding Kwame Kilpatrick speaking event initiated by student organization

by Walter Kraft, Published November 21, 2011

The appearance of former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick is not a university-sponsored event and the university is not providing any funding to Mr. Kilpatrick. Similar to many universities, Eastern has a policy allowing student organizations to determine programming based on their own interests and agenda.

 Eastern Michigan University supports more than 200 student organizations, representing a variety of interests and viewpoints. University policy is to encourage recognized student organizations to invite speakers to campus in the spirit of free exchange of ideas and to promote the timely discussion of a wide variety of issues. 

Student organizations are responsible for managing the events and for any speaker costs. As a public institution, we do not vet, approve or deny their choice of speaker, provided they meet the provisions detailed in the policy: 

·      The speaker(s) must not urge the audience to take action which is prohibited by the rules of the University or which is illegal under federal, state or local law.  Advocating or urging the modification of the government of the United States or the State of Michigan, by violence or sabotage, is specifically prohibited.  It is the responsibility of the student organization to inform speakers of these prohibitions.

·      Any acts that are disruptive to the normal operations of the University including classes and University business or infringe upon the rights of others will not be tolerated.

·      Sponsorship must be by a recognized student organization.



Walter Kraft


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