8 ways one university is investing in anti-racism

Temple University is updating its curriculum and funding more anti-racism training

A new Center for Anti-Racism Research and community youth outreach will share $1 million in new funding for wide-ranging antiracism initiatives at Temple University.

Temple will also invest in anti-racism training and update its curriculum.

Here are the highlights of the university’s efforts:

1. Reinvesting in anti-racism education: Temple’s department of Africology and African American Studies was the first in the U.S. to offer a doctoral program in the field. It will hire four additional full-time faculty members and provide much-needed support for scholarship, research and education.

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2. Creating the Center for Anti-Racism Research: Led by the Department of Africology and African American Studies, this university-wide center will be a resource for solutions-focused research.

The center will be a hub for collaboration among scholars from across Temple and other universities.

3. Investing in a bridge program for North Philadelphia youth: Temple’s educators will develop a new academic enrichment program for students in the Philadelphia School District and a summer bridge program for students in neighboring North Philadelphia neighborhoods.

This initiative will include scholarships and other resources to support the transition from K-12 to higher education to careers.

4. Investing in campus-wide anti-racism training and core curriculum changes: All staff and faculty will be encouraged to complete a new anti-racism training program.

Temple’s core curriculum currently includes a racial diversity course, which we will be modified to more directly address issues of racism.

All schools and colleges will review their curriculums to ensure the programs are preparing students to be proficient in an increasingly diverse world.

5. Bringing the gold standard to Temple Campus Police: Former President Barack Obama’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing Final Report was produced under the direction of former Commissioner of Philadelphia Police Charles H. Ramsey. Temple is evaluating campus police policies and practices to align with these standards.

6. Recruiting and retaining faculty and employees of color: The university will prioritize the recruitment of more diverse faculty and staff, particularly in areas where there are larger numbers of minority candidates and low representation.

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Valerie Harrison, Temple University

7. Building upon existing assets and programs: Temple will invest additional resources to extend the reach of existing programs designed to dismantle barriers to equal access to education, employment and health care, including the Office of Institutional Diversity, Equity, Advocacy and Leadership (IDEAL), the Charles L. Blockson Afro-American Collection and the Pan-African Studies Community Education Program.

8. Coordinating engagement: The university will continue to support the efforts of faculty, staff and students who are enhancing existing anti-racism programs and creating new initiatives.

The initiatives are being overseen by Valerie Harrison, Temple’s senior advisor for equity, diversity and inclusion.

Matt Zalaznick
Matt Zalaznick
Matt Zalaznick is a life-long journalist. Prior to writing for District Administration he worked in daily news all over the country, from the NYC suburbs to the Rocky Mountains, Silicon Valley and the U.S. Virgin Islands. He's also in a band.

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