Protesters wear duct tape over their mouths with "Do UC us?" written on top
Protesters wear duct tape over their mouths, with some of the strips asking: "Do UC us?" Daniel A. Anderson / University Communications

About 50 members of UC Irvine’s Black Student Union stood in front of the Student Center on Wednesday, March 3, with duct tape over their mouths, mutely asking: “Do UC us?”

The silent rally was, in part, a show of solidarity with black students at UC San Diego, roiled by three racist incidents in less than three weeks. It also spotlighted UCI’s African American students, who make up just 2 percent of the undergraduate enrollment.

Supporters from other campus organizations gave voice to the students concerns and read a list of 12 demands presented to UCI administrators last week – among them a call for full funding of a recruitment and retention center for underrepresented students.