This was the response I received when I met with a fellow student regarding diversity, earlier in the semester. Back in March and April, our community came together to discuss the issue of diversity and inclusion. Then, everyone left. We had a three-month gap, where the issue seemed to be lost.
There comes a point where just talking about a certain subject and having no action, gets repetitive and frustrating. It is time to take action and make changes on this campus.
I have been working hard all semester long, with the help from members of this years Executive Board, other student leaders, faculty, staff, and alumni to create a plan to help create the change that is needed.
It brings me great joy to announce the 2016-2017 Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan. This action plan looks to not only continue the conversation, but make visible changes on this campus, to address diversity. The action plan has three steps; a scholarship, a visible representation of diversity on our campus, and re-introducing diversity into our academic curriculum. This action plan looks to align with Fr. Mark Poorman’s 2020 vision.
The first step starts today. With the help of Provost Greene and former Student Body President and alumni, Patrick H. Kessi, we are happy to announce the 2016-2017 Diversity and Inclusion Scholarship. We have each contributed $500 to this $1,500 scholarship. This scholarship is meant to help our students reflect on what diversity means to them and how they encourage diversity in their community. To apply to the scholarship, you may send all your applications to firstname.lastname@example.org. Applicants have until January 22 to turn in their application.
I have selected four members of our UP community to select the winner of this scholarship; Ben Arthur, Mika Aga, Lydia Heye and Bethany Sills. Another faculty member is currently pending and will likely join the committee, as well.
My hope is to continue to make strides to make this University a more inclusive and safe one for all our members, not by just talking about the issue, but instead, by taking action to positively change this campus.
To access the scholarship application, click here.