College students demand Gov. Gianforte's name be removed from school building

Students at Stevens Institute of Technology are demanding that the Montana governor's name is removed from a building for ‘homophobic’ and ‘transphobic’ legislative record.

Gianforte previously donated $20 million to the university and now faces a student petition calling for the building's renaming.

A group of students at Stevens Institute of Technology are pushing for the school to remove Montana Governor and Alumni Greg Gianforte’s name from Gianforte Hall for legislation he has passed and his beliefs regarding transgender people in sports.

Gianforte had donated $20 million for the academic center in 2019 and 2012, and according to the New Jersey university, is “the largest gift to a single project in university history.”

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However, some students are demanding the university reneame Gianforte Family Hall because it’s named after someone who “contradict Stevens’ values as a university.”

Advocates for the building change have started a petition demanding that Stevens show that they hold an inclusive space for students by removing Gianforte’s name, reaching over 1,200 signatures.

The petition claims Gianforte is a ”known supporter of gay conversion therapy, denies the existence of climate change, & contributes financially to hate groups.”

Because of that, the petition demands that the university rename Gianaforte Family Hall.

Nasir Anthony Montalvo, the creator of the petition also authored an article in Advocate titled “Stop Naming Building After Homophobes and Transphobes,” where he wrote that it is the duty of universities to remain an inclusive space and to deny controversial and prejudiced figures from sharing any space with said institutions.

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“If Stevens sits by and watches as their building’s honorific pass an act harming transgender people, then I can only say that they continue to value brick and mortar more than queer experience,” added Montalvo.

In 2019 Stevens students also held a protest against the opening of the Gianforte Family Center and have since continued to ask that the school remove the name. 

Stevens Institute of Tech, and Governor Gianforte have not yet responded for comment. 

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