At our meeting on March 30, 2017, we (Student Senate) attempted to address a race-related issue. In doing so, an accumulation of ignorant comments were made that resulted in black students who were in the public forum to walk out. We recognize that the students who walked out were disappointed in what was said and do not feel accurately represented by us.
In retrospect, we understand that we mishandled this situation in allowing the discussion to get out of hand. We should have taken better control of the situation instead of allowing it to continue to spiral. We apologize to the students who walked out and to the student body as a whole for our negligence.
On Thursday, April 20, 2017, we solely focused on discussing how to address this issue and what to do in the future to prevent a situation like this from happening again. We developed a list of initiatives to better both the senate and the campus. This list includes actions with the purpose of expanding student knowledge and awareness of diversity and diversity topics. See the motion below. We are recommitting ourselves to better represent all students from all walks of life.
For more information contact our advisor, Steve Fox: firstname.lastname@example.org
Charles Bergman, Student Senate President
Courtney O’Reilly, Student Senate Vice President
Kaleen Krueger, Incoming Student Senate President
Adam Schutt, Incoming Student Senate Vice President
MOTION PASSED ON APRIL 27, 2017:
Student Senate Motions to explore the following actions with the purpose of expanding student knowledge and awareness of diversity and diversity topics:
- Expand Student Senates #MSUM4All campaign by making it a university wide campaign and incorporating it within Freshman Year Experience (FYE)
- Helping to standardize the FYE courses curriculum on diversity
- Creating a common-read around campus centering around a book that’s topic is diversity
- Creating one unified diversity training session for all student leaders to take place at the beginning of the academic year
- Create diversity booster training sessions throughout the year
- Creating a diversity event for new student orientation
- Requiring pre-employment diversity training for on-campus jobs
- Creating a 1-credit course focused solely on diversity
- Expanding faculty training and development focusing on how to communicate with students
- Fostering an environment that creates cross-cultural interactions
- Refining and updating best practices to incorporate diversity issues
- Create a cultural sensitivity training session for domestic students