CAU postpones midterms for ‘reflective Mental Health Week’ following baseball player’s death

ATLANTA — Clark Atlanta University officials announced the postponement of midterms Sunday for a “reflective Mental Health Week.”

According to the letter sent by CAU President George T. French, Jr., the university will give students a week of reflection following the death of 20-year-old Jatonne Sterling, who was a member of the university’s baseball team.

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“The administration has initiated developing a more extensive mental health program for the continuous and long-term benefits of the entire CAU community,” French wrote. “Students will be intimately involved in developing the mental health programming led by the Whitney M. Young Jr., School of Social Work and Dr. Jenny L. Jones.”

Police found 20-year-old Jatonne Sterling shot to death in the parking lot of the LYKE House Catholic Newman Center on Beckwith Street on Feb. 28.


Authorities have arrested and charged 25-year-old Keontay Holliman-Peoples with Sterling’s murder.

Detectives say they are still working to identify a third person in connection with the shooting.

In addition to the death of Sterling, the university was placed on lockdown Sunday night after police said they received reports of gunshots in the area of Beckwith Hall. There were no victims or suspects identified in the incident.

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Students told Channel 2 Action News that they feel the university needs to do more to prevent such tragedies from reoccurring.

“We believe that action must be taken immediately to address the issue of gun violence on campus,” student Ajanae Shalice wrote. “As students, we are demanding that the administration takes the necessary steps to ensure our safety on campus.”

French added in his note that midterms would be postponed until after Spring Break 2023 and will begin on Mar. 20, 2023.

Channel 2 Action News reached out to Clark Atlanta University for more information but has not received a response.