Mayor Seeks Improved University Relations

SALISBURY — All was relatively calm on the Salisbury University campus last weekend, one week after over 1,500 college-age individuals rioted and threw bottles and cans at law enforcement officers resulting in the use of pepper spray on the crowd, but Mayor Jim Ireton continued to work this week on improving the relationship between the city and the school.

On April 21, four Salisbury University students were arrested on various charges following the donnybrook at an off-campus housing complex. During the War on the Shore party, hundreds of participants pelted law enforcement officers with beer cans and bottles, forcing officials to resort to pepper spray to disburse the crowd.

In the days that followed, the incident was called into question and the relationship between the campus, its students and the city deteriorated. At least one social network site encouraged students to repeat the performance, but all was relatively quiet in and around the campus last weekend. Late last week, Ireton sent a letter to Salisbury University President Dr. Dane Foust urging mutual cooperation.

“As we work to begin moving the community past the events of Cedar Crossing, I submit the following items for your consideration,” the letter reads. “To begin to mutually address the issues of city-university relations, I ask the university to work collaboratively with me so that we can change the existing culture and assure the university community remains a close ally to the city of Salisbury. I want to stand with you, yet a shift in culture is necessary.”

About The Author: Steven Green

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The writer has been with The Dispatch in various capacities since 1995, including serving as editor and publisher since 2004. His previous titles were managing editor, staff writer, sports editor, sales account manager and copy editor. Growing up in Salisbury before moving to Berlin, Green graduated from Worcester Preparatory School in 1993 and graduated from Loyola University Baltimore in 1997 with degrees in Communications (journalism concentration) and Political Science.