On Monday, bananas were found to be hanging from strings, which were fashioned in the shape of nooses, in three different locations on American University’s campus.
According to the school, the bananas were marked with “AKA,” the abbreviation for Alpha Kappa Alpha, which is a historically black sorority.
American University President Neil Kerwin issued a statement after the bananas and message were discovered, condemning the “crude and racially insensitive act of bigotry.”
“Know that American University remains committed to principles of diversity, inclusion, common courtesy, and human dignity, and acts of bigotry only strengthen our resolve,” Kerwin wrote. “Anyone who does not feel similarly does not belong here.”
Camille Lepre, assistant vice president of communications, said that the bananas were found at the following locations: a shuttle bus stop at Letts-Anderson Halls, in front of Mary Graydon Center and near the East Quad Building.
A campus meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday in order to address the incident, with the university’s President’s Council on Diversity and Inclusion expected to be there not only for the meeting but for one-on-one drop-in sessions for anyone who needs them.
The American University Department of Public Safety is now investigating the incident and is expected to release more information as it becomes available.