Tensions continued to rise Monday after student protesters at UC Davis received an email from the administration asking them to vacate the building or face suspension or even expulsion.
Students say it’s simple, they want to meet with Chancellor Linda Katehi face-to-face.
On the fifth floor of Mrak Hall, blankets, sleeping bags and food are intermingled with signs calling for Katehi’s dismissal.
It’s day four of protests for these students who have been occupying Mrak Hall since Friday afternoon.
Maile Hampton is among the protesters. Hampton has no plans of backing down.
“We still haven’t gotten what we demanded on Friday, and like we said on Friday, we were very determined, and we know that we have the power,” said Hampton. “Clearly it’s showing that it’s Monday and they’re not here.”
Katehi has been under fire for several weeks after reports surfaced that she accepted a paid seat on the board of DeVry University and accepted more than $400,000 for serving on the board of a textbook publisher.
Katehi has since stepped down from both boards and has offered to donate the majority of the money she earned.
“They’re supposed to be for us, and they’re telling us that we are going to be expelled, we are going to get dismissed, might face criminal charges, these things for just doing what’s right,” said Hampton.
Over the weekend, one of the school’s iconic egg head statues was vandalized.
In black spray paint, the words “Fire Katehi” were scribbled on the statue.
Especially symbolic, the sculpture serves as a watchdog, meant to keep an ethical eye aimed at the chancellor.
“It’s very reflective that the entire university is very upset at this, and they’re expressing it in different ways,” said Hampton.
This group of protesters hasn’t claimed responsibility for the vandalism.
Late Sunday nigh, students told FOX40, Vice Chancellor David Lawlor sent them an email, telling them to leave the building or face probation, suspension or expulsion.
“Students who are here and are protesting want to make sure we are living in an ethical university environment. They are being harassed and threatened with potential reprimands,” said student B.B. Buchanan.
Despite less than ideal living corridors and threats from the university, the students stand firm in their unwavering demand.
“Fire Katehi,” said Hampton. “She needs to resign now.”
A UC Davis spokesperson says the students were told they could make an appointment to meet with the chancellor, however, the students say they have not made any appointments.
They plan to remain in the building until Katehi is removed from office.
[Editor’s note: An early version of this story identified Maile Hampton as a UC Davis student. School officials say they have no record of anyone by that name attending school at UC Davis.]