NORTON (CBS/AP) — The Wheaton College women’s soccer team has been suspended from its conference tournament after a player attended an on-campus Halloween party with darkened skin to portray a character from the movie “White Chicks.”
A photo taken Friday shows the woman with her skin darkened by makeup, a drawn-on goatee and a bald cap.
A Wheaton College spokesman called the costume “offensive and racist.” Michael Graca says the investigation could take two weeks, but officials at the college in Norton have already met with students.
Wheaton president Dennis Hanno also called the costume offensive in a letter to the college community.
I am particularly dismayed that this student did not act alone, but was part of a group of other individuals who actively participated in this event and then attempted to cover it up. This runs counter to the value that our community places on creating an inclusive and welcoming educational environment. This is something for which each of us has responsibility. We need to make those expectations clear.
Administrators say the student didn’t play in a soccer game this week and the disciplinary process is underway.
Wheaton was scheduled to play at MIT this weekend in the NEWMAC tournament. But Wheaton College will forfeit that game.
“The team recognizes this is the right decision and accepts the outcome,” said Hanno. “This action is separate from, and will not replace, the student conduct hearing process involving specific individuals now underway. Rather, it is intended to signal a clear message that offensive and racist behavior will not be tolerated at Wheaton.”
In “White Chicks,” two black men disguise themselves as white women. Students say the soccer player was portraying a character played by Terry Crews.
The college’s Black Student Association held a meeting Thursday to educate the community.
The group also offered several demands from the administration, including hiring more people of color and changing the curriculum.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)