Thirty-seven college associations on Sunday issued a joint statement on the importance of diversity in American higher education, report’s todays Inside Higher ed.
“A diverse student body enables all students to have the transformational experience of interacting with their peers who have varied perspectives and come from different backgrounds. These experiences, which are highly valued by employers because of their importance in the workplace, also prepare students with the skills they need to live in an interconnected world and to be more engaged citizens. Our economic future, democracy, and global standing will suffer if the next generation is not ready to engage and work with people whose backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives are different from their own,” says the statement, published as an advertisement Sunday in The New York Times.
“We remain dedicated to the mission of discovering and disseminating knowledge gained through direct experiences with diverse colleagues — a resource for achieving a stronger democracy and nation,” the statement added. Continue reading “Universities begin petition for diversity”
In a story and related video that went viral on the internet today, a bullied 11-year-old boy has prevailed in a campaign against a homophobic Tennessee representative, reports Huffington Post
“Marcel Neergaard is a Tennessee boy who was home-schooled for sixth grade and even contemplated suicide due to severe anti-gay bullying, bullying that many lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocates say could have been fostered in public schools throughout the state if the “Don’t Say Gay” bill had actually passed.
“The bill, rejected in 2012, aimed at banning talk of sexual activity other than “related to natural human reproduction.” It was resurrected by Representative John Ragan(R-Tenn.) this year as the “Classroom Protection Act.” It included an amendment requiring school officials to inform parents if they have reason to believe the child might be gay. The bill also required schools to provide counseling for such students so as to prevent “behavior injurious to the physical or mental health and well-being of the student or another person.”
“The proposed “Classroom” bill failed in March, but prior to that, back in 2012, Ragan scored a victory when he was honored with the educational “Reformer of the Year” award by StudentsFirst, a group dedicated to defending the interests of children in public schools and pushing for transformative reform. Continue reading “Marcel’s courageous petition”
Smith College’s gender and sexuality advocacy organization Q&A recently delivered a petition with 4,000 signatures to the university’s admission’s office in support of a transgender woman, Calliope Wong who was denied admission because her Free Application For Student Aid (FAFSA) identified her as male, reports Huffington Post.
“The advocacy group and Wong have been working with GLAAD to shed light on the difficulty that transgender women face when applying to Smith. They want the college to input an inclusive admissions policy.After receiving the petition signatures, Smith’s Dean of Admissions Debra Shaver said that a committee will be formed to directly address the issues pertaining to transgender applicants.
“The committee is expected to start meeting at the start of the new academic year in September. Students involved in the committee say they were told that the private women’s college would stop using the gender marker on FAFSA applications when evaluating transgender students for admission. Continue reading “Smith responds to pressure”
Thousands of people have downloaded two apps from the Google Play Store that are now generating accusations of racism and stereotyping.
“Make me Asian” and “Make me Indian” apps allow Android smartphone users to transform a portrait by superimposing characteristics supposedly appropriate to such identities.
The apps have caused a firestorm online, with outrage spreading on Facebook and Twitter. Petition campaigns are now urging Google to remove the apps from its store.
“The Make me Asian app manipulates pictures to give the subject yellow-tinged skin, narrow eyes, a conical rice-paddy hat and a Fu Manchu mustache taken from a fictional Chinese villain,” reports NPR Continue reading ““Make Me Asian” app”