After weeks of protests, Howard University has reached an agreement with its students, who spoke out against unsatisfactory campus housing conditions.
On Monday, Howard University President Wayne Frederick announced the news in a press release, sharing that “this is a welcome step forward as we continue to bring together our Howard community.” The solution ends the 33-day protest, which saw students and some faculty camped outside of Howard’s Blackburn Center in tents.
“About a month ago, a group of students began the occupation of the Blackburn building,” Frederick said in a video statement shared within the release. “They did so to raise awareness for their concerns about housing issues at the university, as well as other issues that they voiced to me and my administration.”
He continued: “The health and well-being of our students is the most important part of my job as president. As I have said before, even one issue in one of our dormitories is too many, and we will continue to remain vigilant in our pledge to maintain safe and high-end housing.”
Howard University has not yet revealed details of the agreement. A spokesperson for the university did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Student protests began on Oct. 12 when several campus residents made complaints about mold, flooding, roach and mice infestation, leaky pipes, and more in the dorms. According to CNN, when complaints went unaddressed by school administrators, students decided to protest with a sit in by sleeping in tents, air mattresses, and sleeping bags outside of the Blackburn Center.
Students also created a petition, calling on the university to end its relationship with Corvias, the company that maintains and operates residential buildings on campus, claiming “corporate greed” has allowed campus living conditions to continue for so long. The petition has since gathered over 4,750 signatures.
Corvias did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
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Though Monday’s agreement between student protesters and school administration was made, Frederick criticized the students’ means of protesting by camping outside.
“Protests drive change. I accept and applaud it,” Frederick said in the release. “I do however struggle with a type of protest that jeopardizes student safety — the very thing students said founded their concerns.”
During a press conference held by The Live Movement — which co-organized the protest — student protesters celebrated the agreement and ensured that “our work is far from over.”
“We spent 33 days saying that not only did our lives mattered, that our voices mattered, and our concerns mattered,” one student said. “We came, we saw, we declared, and we won.”