Chancellor announces campus-wide diversity and inclusion training

Loftin said students are the ultimate solution to changing campus climate in regards to racism and discrimination.

Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin announced the development of a diversity and inclusion training for students, faculty and staff starting in January 2016, according to a news release from the Office of the Chancellor

Loftin said in an interview that this training has two goals: to promote inclusivity and to make people aware of the benefits of diversity at MU.

“We’ve had a series over the last month … in terms of specific incidences where hateful speech was used toward students of color,” Loftin said. “That simply is not to be done here. We just will not tolerate that kind of behavior here.”

All admitted students will be required to complete this training in order to register for classes. For faculty and staff, the training will be “required and put in place as soon as possible,” per the statement.

Loftin said that the training for students enrolling next semester will be face-to-face, since they will not have enough time to complete an online version of the training in time. The format will eventually be similar to the Enough is Enough training taken by this year’s incoming students.

This training is in addition to action announced earlier this week detailed in an email:

Vice Chancellor for Inclusion, Diversity and Equity: Provost Garnett Stokes is leading a national search for this new position. The administration is searching for “the best person who can understand the challenges we face and help us move toward a better future.”

Diversity training for job searches: Every person responsible for hiring faculty and staff on this campus will be required to complete training to “ensure that we are fully considering diversity” when recruiting for positions on campus.

Campus Climate Survey: The administration will ask everyone to participate in a campus climate survey related to race issues on campus.

Loftin said he is in support of the survey, which created by the office of Provost Garnett Stokes. Associate professor Berkley Hudson, chairman of Faculty Council’s Committee on Race Relations, announced that he is in favor of the training.

He said the training complements the work the committee on race relations has been doing since the beginning of the year. “The Chancellor’s announcement responds directly to recent events of explicit racism on campus and it responds to the call by Missouri Students Association President Payton Head, after he was assaulted by racist slurs, who said: ‘It’s time to wake up, Mizzou,’” Hudson said in a news release.

Loftin said students are the ultimate solution to changing campus climate in regards to racism and discrimination.

“I think the students themselves have an extraordinary capability to help this situation,” Loftin said. “I don’t believe we have a majority of the people here are racist, quite frankly. I believe we have a number of people who are very passionately devoted to diversity on this campus. I hear from them directly.”

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