US Dept. of Education investigates antisemitism allegations at Northwestern, schools nationwide

Leah Hope Image
Wednesday, January 24, 2024
US Dept. of Education investigates antisemitism allegations at NU
The United States Department of Education is investigating antisemitism allegations at Northwestern University and at other schools nationwide.

EVANSTON, Ill (WLS) -- Administrators at Northwestern University reacted Wednesday to a new investigation by the US Department of Education about allegations of antisemitism.

The campus of Northwestern University was also busy Wednesday, with many gearing up for a basketball game against the Illini.

"The University will respond to the Department of Education and cooperate with its investigation," a statement from a university spokesperson read in part. "The complaint against Northwestern was not filed by a member of our community but instead by an outside organization."

Zachary Marschall is based in Virginia and is the Editor in Chief of Campus Reform. He said he filed 21 complaints with the Department of Education regarding antisemitism on American campuses, including Northwestern.

'What really upset me last semester was seeing that it was ignoring or tip toeing around the issue, that it never would have if this type of hatred was targeted to any other minority group," Marschall said.

SEE ALSO | Northwestern targeted by ad campaign criticizing response to antisemitism, Hamas attack on Israel

Northwestern's president has created an advisory committee on Preventing Antisemitism and Hate.

Senior student Lily Cohen is a member of the Committee. She said she has felt antisemitism there even before the Oct. 7th Hamas attack in Israel.

"The biggest thing that I'm hoping that comes out of all the national attention on universities about antisemitism on campuses this year is that it's taken more seriously," Cohen said.

SEE ALSO | UIC under federal investigation for discrimination by Education Department

Michael Simon is the Executive Director of Northwestern Hillel and is also a member of the committee.

"I still believe the day-to-day is a safe and positive environment for Jewish students, and most students, but we have work to do," Simon said.

The Department of Education will not comment on current investigations. The agency's office of civil rights is now looking into allegations of discrimination at dozens of schools nationwide.