STEVENS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY - BAIT AND SWITCH
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For more than a year, Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, NJ, went before the zoning board seeking variances to build the “Gateway Center” on Hudson and 6th Streets in Hoboken. They have now announced that it will be named “The Gianforte Academic Center,” named for Greg Gianforte, an alum who donated the funds to Stevens for this project.
According to “The Stute," Stevens’ newspaper, the second donation of $10 million came with the stipulation that the Gateway Complex be named after the Gianforte family.
The newly - elected Montana congressman Greg Gianforte was in the news for “body slamming a reporter who was covering him” (see The Hoboken Reporter article, “Stevens’ $20 million donor allegedly assaulted reporter,”) which he admitted. His reputation as a vocal critic of gay rights, a supporter of creationism, and a donor to white supremacists and for gay conversion, speaks for itself.
President Farvardin turned a deaf ear to the petition already circulated by some alumni, students, and faculty against naming the building for Gianforte. Stevens stated that they, “ do not take a position or offer comments related to political campaigns.”
This is not a political campaign and by naming the new buildings for Gianforte, they are indeed taking a position. The position is that money is more important to them.
Those signing this petition are residents of Hoboken, and we add our voices to those of the students and faculty. We do not wish the buildings to bear Gianforte’s name.
Our city is a diverse, open, welcoming one, and putting Gianforte's name prominently on Hudson Street is an insult to us all.
At the very least, we ask Stevens not to have Gianforte’s name facing 6th or Hudson Streets. If they insist on featuring Gianforte’s name, let it be on the side of the buildings that face their campus. President Farvardin needs to show sensitivity to the people of the city.
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