The Cornell Board of Trustees committees on student life and academic affairs reached a general consensus Thursday that the Cornell Plantations should be renamed the Cornell Botanic Gardens. The board will conduct an official vote on the issue Friday.
Kathryn Boor, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, explained that the board hired a consultant to investigate whether the name Cornell Plantations is appropriate. Throughout this evaluation, the board contacted 2,700 stakeholders and found “strong support for the name to change,” Boor said.
A change to the plantations’ name was one in a list of demands that Black Students United delivered to President Elizabeth Garrett last November, citing the word’s ties to slavery.
Boor acknowledged issues with the current name, saying that it implies “political multiculture” and is a “throwback to a painful time in U.S. history.”
The initiative has received unanimous support from Cornell constituencies, including the Faculty Senate, Student Assembly and Employee Assembly.
A previous version of this story incorrectly stated that the Board of Trustees discussed the renaming of the plantations on Thursday. In fact, the board’s committees on student life and academic affairs held the discussion.