Howard Students Are Protesting Financial Aid Theft Using the Power of Rihanna


Howard University students are currently occupying their university’s administration building to protest recent discoveries of financial aid theft—and they’re using Rihanna songs to do it.

This week, a student whistleblower published a now-suspended Medium post that alleged former financial aid officials embezzled $1 million in financial aid funds. Howard University President Wayne Fredrick has since said he was aware of the misappropriated funds and an investigation was concluded in May 2017, though university students were kept in the dark.

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Fredrick wrote in a statement:

“The investigation found that from 2007 to 2016, University grants were given to some University employees who also received tuition remission. The audit revealed that the combination of University grants and tuition remission exceeded the total cost of attendance. As a result, some individuals received inappropriate refunds.”

He also said that back in September, six employees were fired for “gross misconduct and neglect of duties.” Now a handful of students are protesting by occupying the administration building until Frederick resigns, according to reporter Anna-Lysa Gayle:

Videos show students in the building singing Rihanna’s “Bitch Better Have My Money,” and later, Fast Life Yungstaz’s “Swag Surfin.”

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Rihanna herself tweeted a message of approval for the students:

According to Huffington Post, HU Resist, a student organization on campus, had scheduled a sit-in prior to the scandal and have now released a list of demands:

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Besides Frederick’s resignation, the demands include “an end to unsubstantiated tuition hikes,” “the immediate disarming of campus police officers,” and that the university “allocate more resources toward combating food insecurity and gentrification.”


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