Created By: The AJC + The Nation

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The Costs of Campus Activism

On May 3, Caleb Jackson was shocked to receive an e-mail from the financial-aid office at American University informing him he was no longer eligible for aid.

One year ago, Jackson missed three of his final exams when he took part in demonstrations demanding accountability for the culprit of yet another racial incident on campus like those that marked nearly every year of his matriculation at AU. Last year it was bananas hanging from nooses in response to the election of the school’s first black woman student-government president. Despite the pressure of final exams, Jackson felt the overt racism and implied threats of the noose incident compelled him, and many of his fellow students, to engage in the urgent protests that immediately followed.