History of Campus Demonstrations & Rallies

A guide detailing historical events on the campus of Eastern Michigan University related to student protest and demonstrations

Student Mobilization Committee

A prominent anti-war campus organization was the Student Mobilization Committee Against the War in Vietnam (SMC). Not only at EMU, SMC was the largest university organization nationwide. SMC was formed to “educate the students on EMU campus as to the nature of the US involvement in the Viet Namese [sic] war and to build support for the immediate withdrawal of US troops from South Viet Nam [sic]. As an anti-war committee, the SMC would conduct lectures, symposiums, and discussions around the war question and seek to convince other as to the need for the US withdrawal from Viet Nam [sic].” Flyers, meetings, teach-ins, and protest groups were used by SMC to not only show dissidence towards the war in Vietnam, but all military activity that was happening on university campuses across the nation.

Students for a Democratic Society

Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) was a nationwide student organization that also protested against the Vietnam War. SDS participated in many of the protests and demonstrations that were anti-Vietnam. This organization was not just against the war in Vietnam, but played a large part in the Civil Rights Movement as well. The branch of the SDS on Eastern Michigan University's campus held many demonstrations against the ROTC program on campus as well as draft recruiters on campus. The Students for a Democratic Society were much more aggressive in their approach to demonstrations than other student groups and their protests often led to arrests.

Project Credit

The History of Campus Demonstrations guide was created by Aleesa Wright as part of her course work for HIST489L4.