The most recent swastika was found this week on a window at the UND law school. There's also been other racist graffiti aimed at Jews, African Americans and homosexuals in recent months.
University spokesman Peter Johnson says UND police are investigating some of the cases. He says students have been sanctioned, and criminal charges have been filed in at least one case.
Johnson says the racist graffiti is unacceptable, but he believes it's not a sign of organized racist groups.
“Whenever something like a swastika or any other symbol of oppression appears on a campus, we need to push back very quickly, very firmly.”Marcia Mikulak
"It's not like there's skin heads running around campus. It's not like crosses being burned in the yard kind of malicious," Johnson says. "It's been more personality issues we think. That does not diminish what's going on so I don't mean to indicate that."
Johnson says the university is committed to working with faculty and outside organizations to develop education programs for students. He says ironically, some of the racist graffiti was scrawled on buildings while the university was hosting a conference on diversity.
Prof. Gregory Gordon, director of the Center for Human Rights and Genocide Studies at UND, and a former war crimes prosecutor says the swastika demands a strong response.
"These are not innocent pranks. These aren't even twisted impulsive pranks or even a poorly chosen vehicle through which somebody is expressing anger," he says. "This is a symbol of evil which is intended to divide us as a community."
Some UND faculty members have criticized the administration for not responding strongly enough.
Marcia Mikulak an anthropology professor and several colleagues wrote a letter to the editor that was published in several regional newspapers critical of the University administration.
Mikulak says she's proud of the universities' growing international student program, and strong American Indian programs.
"But we also have problems on this campus," she says, "and those problems need to be addressed when they occur. Whenever something like a swastika or any other symbol of oppression appears on a campus, we need to push back very quickly, very firmly."
Mikulak says she thinks the UND administration is now taking a strong, if somewhat delayed position condemning the racist acts.
North Dakota Gov. John Hoeven weighed in this week, calling for a strong response from administration, faculty and students.
UND spokesman Peter Johnson says the University has always taken the incidents very seriously. He says the only delay was in making public statements about the racist acts.
Johnson says UND officials will work through the summer to develop a coordinated education and training effort that will greet students returning to campus for the fall semester.