Statement from President Abernathy regarding Nisbet Hall

Campus community,

As we continue to learn and foster a campus environment built on our shared values, it’s important that we have critical conversations about how and why we honor certain individuals. As such, Alma College has committed to the process of reviewing its named buildings, as part of a planned assessment of our campus climate related to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Prior to the commencement of this audit and review process, we discovered strong evidence, based on findings by the Michigan State University Board of Trustees, that Stephen Nisbet was a member of the Ku Klux Klan. A1919 alumnus who was a member of the Alma College Board of Trustees from 1944 to 1986, Nisbet was the namesake of Nisbet Hall on Alma’s campus. The executive committee of the Alma College Board of Trustees has voted to rename Nisbet Hall. The renaming of the building is currently under review and will be shared when it is available.

Alma College denounces racism in all forms and is committed to creating a climate where everyone is safe and free to grow intellectually, spiritually, and emotionally. We will move forward in these efforts together.

— Jeff

Story published on September 05, 2020