Central State University officials confirmed Friday that they have covered up Bill Cosby’s name on a campus sign in front of the Camille O. and William H Cosby Mass Communications Center.
“The university took an interim step to cover a sign bearing Cosby’s name amid the recent information that has come to light,” said Edwina Blackwell Clark, a spokeswoman for the university.
Cosby’s name does still remain on a separate sign inside the campus’ main entrance.
A final decision regarding the future of Cosby’s name on the campus could be made as soon as September, when the university’s trustees hold their next meeting.
In the wake of charges that comedian Bill Cosby drugged women as a means to have sex with them, Central State University said it’s considering whether to keep his name on a campus building.
When the charges surfaced, Central State said it would not change the name of the Camille O. and William H. Cosby Mass Communications Center. Amid the emergence of new details, the president of the historic black university said that decision is being reconsidered.
“Recent revelations regarding Mr. Bill Cosby’s activities in past decades have postured Central State University to re-examine its decision to maintain the Cosby name on one of its buildings,” said CSU President Cynthia Jackson-Hammond.
Cosby is part of Central State culture. Communication majors nickname themselves “Cosby kids.”
The Cosby family has donated more than $1 million to the university for a number of different needs. But back in 2007 and 2003, Cosby also helped raise money for the university as part of what was called the Cosby Challenge. Those campaigns raised in total $4.1 million.
The university didn’t provide a specific timeline for a decision.
“The maintenance or removal of the Cosby name will be discussed appropriately and actions relative to the final decision will occur immediately,” the president added. “Central State University is committed to protecting and persevering the rights and dignity of all people. The very unfortunate circumstances of the Cosby situation are troublesome and disappointing to all.”
Lamarr Cole of Dayton, a 2014 graduate of Central State, said Cosby’s advocacy on behalf of historically black colleges and universities convinced him to attend the school.
“That was one of the things that, you know, made it more concrete that I wanted to go to Central State,” the English major said.
CSU spokeswoman Edwina Blackwell Clark said Thursday that the decision about the building’s name will be made by the Board of Trustees in consultation with the CSU Foundation.
Staff writer Lauren Clark contributed to this report.
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