A group of 40 colleges and universities is ready to take the next step to fight systemic racism and build more equity on their campuses and in their communities. Although most already have made diversity, equity and inclusion part of their strategic missions, they recognize that may not be enough.
So the cohort—along with 35 existing host institutions—will participate in the 2022 Institute on Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation (TRHT) Campus Centers held virtually June 21-24 by the American Association of Colleges & Universities. There, they will be able to forge their own action plans to ensure their campuses are open and welcoming while combatting racism and injustice in American society.
Last year, more than 70 institutions took part in the annual event, and the AAC&U is working toward its goal of getting 150 self-sustaining and community-serving Campus Centers across the country.
Though many colleges and universities have made efforts to foster inclusion, increase awareness about racism and build resources for all students, there remain longstanding barriers to success for Blacks, Hispanics and Native Americans—from the over-policing of some groups to the lack of high-paying jobs and health care to voting rights.
“The growing importance of, and the need for, truth-telling, narrative change, and racial healing is evident by the number of institutions that elected to attend the institute,” said Tia Brown McNair, AAC&U vice president for diversity, equity and student success and executive director for the TRHT Campus Centers. “We remain humbled that our colleagues continue to partner with us on this effort to build more just and equitable institutions and communities.”
Those who attend will be creating long-term strategies for their campuses under the Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation five ideals, which focus on narrative change, racial healing and relationship building, separation, law and economy. They will be utilizing their current plans to assess processes such as evaluations, communications, engagement and sustainability.
The goal is to uproot biases and inspire the next generation of leaders and thinkers to advance justice and build more equitable communities. Though the group is set for this year, the AAC&U is welcoming partners that want to prepare future leaders invested in tackling issues of equity while building value. Those that wish to host future campus centers must attend a TRHT Campus Centers Institute, build an action plan, be committed to the THRT ideals and take part in “evaluation efforts and dissemination reports.” Colleges can reach out to McNair for more information.
This year’s group of 40 new attendees includes:
Arkansas: University of Arkansas at Little Rock
California: State Polytechnic University at Pomona; State Polytechnic University, Humboldt, Irvine Valley College, La Sierra University
Connecticut: University of Connecticut
Florida: Florida International University
Georgia: Emory University
Illinois: Benedictine University, Northeastern Illinois University
Indiana: Indiana University South Bend
Iowa: Wartburg College
Kansas: Kansas State University
Louisiana: Centenary College
Massachusetts: Mount Holyoke College, Westfield State University
Michigan: Wayne State University
Minnesota: University of Minnesota, College of Liberal Arts; University of Minnesota Rochester; The College of St. Scholastica; North Hennepin Community College
Missouri: Missouri College and Career Attainment Network
Nebraska: University of Nebraska at Omaha
New York: Cornell University, Hofstra University; The State University of New York at Oswego; Monroe Community College
North Carolina: University of North Carolina Wilmington
Ohio: Baldwin Wallace University
Oregon: Eastern Oregon University
Pennsylvania: Cheyney University, Franklin & Marshall College, Penn State Brandywine
Tennessee: The University of the South
Texas: Trinity University
Utah: Dixie State University, University of Utah
Vermont: Landmark College
Virginia: Hollins University
Washington: Bellevue College
The 35 host institutions that will take part are: Adelphi University, Agnes Scott College, Alamo Colleges District, Andrews University, Austin Community College, Bethel College , Big Sandy Community & Technical College, California State University-Long Beach, Dominican University, Georgia Highlands College, Holy Names University, Hope College, Loyola Marymount University, Marymount University, Marywood University, Mercer County Community College, Middlesex Community College, Montgomery College, Northern Illinois University, Northern Virginia Community College, Otterbein University, Pepperdine University, Prince George’s Community College, Queensborough Community College, Rutgers University–Camden, Rutgers University–Newark, Seton Hall University, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, St. Petersburg/Pinellas Higher Education for Race Equity, State University of New York at Plattsburgh, Suffolk University, The Citadel, UC Davis Health, University of Hawai’i at Hilo, University of Hawai’i at MÄnoa.