News | Student Life

Red wrists, silent statements at King's Crown awards ceremony

  • Jess Swanson for Spectator
    AWARDS | Recipients of this year's Innovation and Enhancement award pose for a photo at Thursday night's King's Crown Leadership Excellence Awards ceremony.

Eleven students wore red wristbands in quiet protest at Thursday night’s King’s Crown Leadership Excellence Awards ceremony, at which over 100 students were given various awards for their contributions to the Columbia community.

The students, all of whom were recipients of awards, had earlier signed a statement calling on the Columbia administration to take further action to reform and improve sexual assault policies. 

“We are just a group of students who wanted to take this opportunity to highlight specific concerns, like gaps in the policy that have still not been addressed while also appreciating the work that’s been done by the students and staff on campus,” signatory Caitlin Lowell, CC ’15, who won an award for inclusion and advocacy for her work with the Columbia Queer Alliance, said.

“The recognition—and we as people who have been recognized as community leaders who give back are making this statement—I think that is the main power of this statement,” signatory Haylin Belay, CC ’15, who won a King’s Crown Award for health and wellness for working with Alice! Health Promotion and other outlets that promote health on campus, said. 

More than 100 students attended the award ceremony in Roone Arledge Auditorium, most of whom were recipients themselves. Seniors, juniors, and sophomores, as well as student groups, were given awards for the various roles they played in student groups.

Senior Marshals for Columbia College and the School of Engineering and Applied Science were also announced at the ceremony. The marshals will lead CC and SEAS class processions during their respective Class Days.

yasemin.akcaguner@columbiaspectator.com  |  @y_akcaguner

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