"Achieving racial equity" is an objective of many campus leaders. But it is a few goal they say they have achieved. Behind the numbers of diversity: Achieving racial equity on campus (Harvard Education Press), W. Carvard Byrd argues that to achieve true racial equity, universities must speak honestly about their stories and values. Byrd is Director of Research Initiatives at the National Institutional Diversity Center at the University of Michigan.
He answered questions about him by email. P>
Q: You write, "Contrary to popular belief, universities are not blind to color, neutral and meritocratic educational organizations; nor were they founded to be like that." Why is this important? Why do people prefer to think that those things are true? P>
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A: Thank you for drawing attention to this fundamental point of the book. The history of higher education contains a constant trajectory of the infusion race and the support of racism in and through colleges and universities without attracting attention necessarily to the daily reality of these perspectives and operations. For example, the stories of early college life show that, although the white men of well-connected families were trained to assume family businesses, entering medicine or following a life as clerics, higher education was also armed to perpetuate the Slave economy and promote the genocide of indigenous communities. Since these first days, Race has been a central feature of how policies, procedures and what is taught in the classrooms and laboratories through historical eras. P>
Confronting this story that our beloved Alma Matters attended in the facilitation of such atrocities are difficult for some people to fill with. These stories and how they connect to what we see on today's campuses, also challenge the pink narrative that universities are uniformly progressive organizations that value the alleged "merit" that people hold; That is, people who are academic success or are rewarded with tenure, have demonstrated their ideas, work and general abilities are valued by their universities and those around them. P>
If this vision of the universities that operate as meritocratic organizations were true, we would not have the many racial disparities that stand out through the higher education of the WHO admitted to certain institutions, in which fields seek titles, Those who are likely to obtain a degree at different levels, who are offered the opportunity to be interviewed for a coveted tenure. Position of the track and whose work is valued by the promotion and tenure committees. An integral piece of this conversation is that universities are part of society, not separated from it. If we must face this racism, it is part of how other organizations operate, then we must fully cool how universities are also part of that reality. That can influence how we understand common statistics about representation, opportunity and support, and the results that guide the decision making of the campus. P>
Q: How does the faculty play a role in racial inequality? Particularly, can you discuss research on the faculty and service of minorities? P>
A: If we focus on the faculty service, the importance of why framing universities as neutral of the race can be harmful to understand how a policy can perpetuate racial inequality becomes more evident . A growing literature that includes the two alleged incompetent volumes and Joya Misra's work shows how the faculty service work is highly racialized and gender. Color School, especially women, often come across to do much more services than their white colleagues. Because the service is framed as a neutral feature of the Facul race.
Statement by Secretary Miguel Cardona on the confirmation of James Kvaal as an undersecretary of education September 14, 2021 Contact: Press office,
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