President’s Statement Regarding Disruption in Sweeney Hall

by | Feb 20, 2024 | Uncategorized

The following message was sent to the SJSU campus community on Tuesday, February 20, 2024.

Dear Spartan Community,

I write to inform the campus community of an incident that occurred on Monday, February 19, in Sweeney Hall, where an altercation occurred between protestors, including students, and a member of SJSU’s faculty outside of a classroom where a scheduled guest speaker was presenting during a class session.  

Fortunately, no serious physical injuries were reported. At this time, no police charges have been filed. The circumstances of Monday’s incident, which led to the guest speaker and students being escorted from a classroom, are still under investigation. A SJSU employee involved in the altercation has been placed on administrative leave, pending additional review pursuant to campus protocols. A review of the circumstances surrounding yesterday’s incident is ongoing and other members of the SJSU community may also face administrative action based on reported activities that do not align with campus policy. 

I want to be clear — physical altercations or threatening behaviors that jeopardize the safety and security of any member of our university community will not be tolerated

Our campus values the right to free speech and respects the academic freedom of our faculty and students. At the same time, we also value the right of everyone in our community to learn in a safe environment that privileges dialogue and engagement. Our campus policies and protocols affirm these commitments and guide our ongoing effort to advance knowledge while also providing safe space for alternative voices to be heard. 


Dr. Cynthia Teniente-Matson


If you ever need to report an incident of hate or are in need of additional support around this and other related matters, please take advantage of the following resources:

To Report:

Students and employees have access to emotional support and counseling services as well as valuable resources that can hold space for discussion, connection and support.  

Resources for Students: 

Resources for employees:

Resources for Everyone: