July 21, 2019 | 92° F

RU alum should get more recognition

Letter to the Editor

An underappreciated Rutgers alumni, Paul Robeson, was brought to my attention recently. His story inspired me to start a petition to change the football stadium’s name to the “Paul Robeson Stadium.”

Paul Robeson was the third African American ever accepted to Rutgers University. In 1919, he graduated as the class valedictorian and football All-American. He is one of Rutgers’ most distinguished African American alumni, and yet, he has little to no recognition. After graduating from Rutgers, Robeson went on to get a law degree at Columbia Law School, became a civil rights and peace activist, played professionally in the NFL and became a well-known actor and singer. During the 1950s, Robeson was blacklisted by the FBI for his activism and political views, nearly erasing him from Rutgers’ history. In order to commemorate this role model, the High Point Solutions football stadium should be renamed the Paul Robeson Stadium instead of an insurance company’s name. This man should be recognized as one of Rutgers’ most distinguished alumni.

A link to the petition and a brief overview of Paul Robeson’s life can be found on change.org.

Alex Kaufman is a School of Environmental and Biological Sciences senior majoring in ecology, evolution and natural resources.

By Alex Kaufman

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