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November 12, 2015

Students at Boston College walked out of their classes on Thursday to stand in solidarity with students at the University of Missouri. (Steven Senne/AP).

The University of Missouri is in the spotlight this week for mishandling racial unrest that has paralyzed the campus, and some local students see the Missouri movement as just the opening salvo in civil unrest on American campuses.

Under a cold rain, hundreds of Boston College students walked out of their classes on Thursday to share stories of racial injustice.

“I stand here today for my cousin at Mizzou," said one student. "I stand here for my friend who was told college isn’t for him here on BC’s campus."

The BC protests were part of a day of action on dozens of campuses across the country. Senior Afua Laast, 21, organized the event at BC, and says much more needs to be done to improve the racial climate on campus.

"How can the university make this a safer space for students to feel welcome on this campus, but also how can we have a national conversation so we can have more people going through the education system?”

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In an email to faculty, Dean of the Morrissey College of Arts and Sciences Gregory Kalscheur wrote, “the demonstration will invite us to deepen our reflection on important issues of justice and diversity that are worthy of careful thought, attentive listening, and respectful dialogue.”

Protesters say that's just a start to changing campus culture.

Students and faculty at Smith College and Emerson College also staged walk-outs earlier this week.

Earlier: Diversity In Higher Ed Flatlines

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