Ending racism starts with required diversity courses

Black And White, Kids Hands, Race, Racism
Black And White, Kids Hands, Race, Racism

Ending racism in colleges can be achieved by forcing students to take diversity courses! That’s right, another story on how the university really doesn’t seem like a place for learning anymore.

New York’s Hamilton College will soon mandate diversity courses that will educate students and give “an awareness of the challenges and responsibilities of local, national, and global citizenship” by making diversity courses a part of the curriculum. Will this end racism at Hamilton College?

Basically, by making diversity courses a core requirement, Hamilton College is placing these courses on the same level of importance as English and Mathematics.

“ALL CONCENTRATIONS WILL REQUIRE STUDENTS TO TAKE ONE OR MORE COURSES THAT INFORM THEM OF “STRUCTURAL AND INSTITUTIONAL HIERARCHIES BASED ON ONE OR MORE OF THE SOCIAL CATEGORIES OF RACE, CLASS, GENDER, ETHNICITY, NATIONALITY, RELIGION, SEXUALITY, AGE, AND ABILITIES/DISABILITIES.”

STUDENTS MUST GAIN ‘AN AWARENESS OF THE CHALLENGES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF LOCAL, NATIONAL, AND GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP” BY “CRITICALLY ENGAG[ING] WITH MULTIPLE CULTURAL TRADITIONS AND PERSPECTIVES, AND WITH INTERPERSONAL SITUATIONS THAT ENHANCE UNDERSTANDING OF DIFFERENT IDENTITIES.’”

So, how exactly does placing diversity courses on the same level as mathematics and English combat racism?

Let’s first acknowledge that attending a college or a university is a choice. After investing thousands of dollars into one’s education, a student should be able to choose his or her own courses – those geared towards your interest, your major, and will give you a valuable skill set. This is understandably achieved through courses in writing, public speaking, business, history…but diversity? How do you even teach a course on that?

Universities are themselves a symbol of diversity. Campuses welcome students not only all over the United States but internationally as well. Mandating students to take a course on different types of religions, ethnicities, and even sexualities will not combat racism or prejudice. After all, racism is taught, but attempting to ‘un-teach’ racism will not solve pressing world issues.

The strategic move of the college is clear. The young minds work like sponges, especially the minds of bedazzled freshmen who enter college to seek new experiences.

If the college is so concerned about promoting a loving, caring environment on campus, why not mandate school-wide prayer? Or is that forcing religion down people’s throats?

Read the full story about these mandated courses at CampusReform.

Picture Credit StevenDepolo

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