USD President addresses Hawaii Day issues

PIERRE, S.D. (WNAX) – Misperceptions about free speech policy and cultural sensitivities led to complaints and concerns about a “Hawaii Day” themed party at the Law School at the University of South Dakota.

USD President Sheila Gestring says the Student Bar Association (SBA) asked for approval to hold the event.

Gestring, appearing before the legislatures Government Operations & Audit Committee, says concerns were raised about possible violations of University policy.

Gestring says an email reply to a request for advice was poorly written.

Gestring, along with a University lawyer, told lawmakers they will continue to educate students about free speech rights and responsibilities. Legislators took no action on the report.