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Alumni concerns grow as Howard University protest pushes into 5th day

A Howard University alumnus expressed concerns Sunday that the student protesters occupying the Administration Building may be kicked-out.

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) — A Howard University alumnus said he and others are planning to write a letter to the university’s president encouraging him not to kick-out student protesters from their Administration Building.

An increased police presence could be seen outside of the university's occupied building Sunday evening.

It marked the fourth day of the HU Resist student sit-in -- and a breakthrough.

MORE: Student who publicized Howard U scandal says protesting won't stop until president resigns

A letter went out to students confirming the university will comply with one of the student protesters’ nine demands.

The note from Kenneth M. Holmes, Vice President of Student Affairs, read among other things, “one fruitful outcome of that discussion is that the deadline to submit the $200 housing deposit will be extended to May 1, 2018.”

It was big news for the students dependent on campus housing. It was even greater news for the students participating in sit-in of the administration building.

“I think it is going to let students who are not here know that the University is listening to us because we have this building,” said Howard U freshman and protest organizer Imani Bryant.

More student protesters arrived with pillows Sunday night.

Supporters dropped off cases of water getting ready for Monday -- the fifth day of this protest.

Under the name HU Resist, students took-over the their Administration Building on Thursday. They were fed up with a host of issues, including the most recent news that six university members had been fired in an embezzlement scandal.

“What really hurt me the most is my roommate last year, we got really close – she’s my best friend, and she wasn’t able to return this year because of financial mismanagement in this building,” said Stacia King.

The sophomore told WUSA9 this is her first time ever taking part in something this drastic.

“In terms of faculty and staff, no they will not be allowed into this administration building,” said one HU Resist student spokesperson Alexis McKenney.

Inside the administration building, students feel empowered they said.

“The Howard University that I thought I was coming to, that I dreamed about coming to is what’s going on inside that building,” said King, “… we respect each other, we listen to each other, we make democratic decisions.”

Protest organizers told reporters they’ve organized classes to take place inside. They held an Easter service Sunday morning.

Protesters were visited by alumni who took action decades ago.

“I actually asked an alumnus today -- ‘Is it different? How is it different?’ It’s like no, it’s the exact same issues that have been going on,” said King.

They now have one demand checked off the list.

HU Resist leaders still say they won’t leave until all of their demands are met.

Those same leaders told WUSA9 they will not budge on calling for Howard’s President to resign even if it means missing class.

“I personally think that we should have immunity in that case because we are carrying on the tradition of Howard, the tradition of activism, the tradition of resistance of oppression,” said McKenney.

Another, more controversial, demand of the students’ call to disarm campus police.

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