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Remembering Former Campus Activist Isaiah Young



Photo: Facebook

When you study journalism, you are given a set of rules to follow. How to cover stories, remove yourself from the narrative, state the facts, listen, type, report, edit, publish. Today, I am breaking those rules. The life of Isaiah Young is not one that can be reduced to characters on a screen. There are no adjectives, nouns, or verbs that can be strewn together to communicate the impact Isaiah had on those around them.


American University, whether admittedly or not, remains forever indebted to Isaiah "Zay" Young and their passion, dedication and unwavering drive to fight on behalf of the Black community on campus. Refusing to be silenced, Isaiah, was a force not to be reckoned with. From burning the American flag on the steps of Mary Graydon Center to airing the grievances of Black students to Provost Scott Bass during the Black Exodus demonstration to co-organizing the "It's in the Air" protest following hate crimes targeting Black students on campus, American University has never been witness to a more brave, impassioned or caring soul. This is why it pains me to state the facts:

On Wednesday, September 12, former American University Student Isaiah Young passed away as a result of a grand mal seizure associated with epilepsy.

They were 21-years-old.

They will not be forgotten.

A supporter of The Blackprint Magazine, Isaiah was heavily involved with the Black Student Union, AU Students Against Sexual Violence and Phi Alpha Delta. Isaiah's memory will continue to live on through their family, friends and the changes they have influenced for the generations of Black American University students to come.

Someone that can only be defined as was sweet, funny, encouraging, supportive and loyal until the end, Isaiah's larger-than-life personality will be missed dearly.

Donate to Isaiah Young's GoFundMe by clicking here. All proceeds will be given to their family to help pay for their funeral.

For support, please contact the Counseling Center, Kay Spiritual Life Center, Wellness Center or Center for Diversity and Inclusion.

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