By Michael Alberto
In April 2021, State Senator Art Haywood, in combination with Black PASSHE students and PASSHE university officials, adopted and began to implement new initiatives designed to combat racism throughout college campuses.
The adopted initiatives included mandatory diversity training, an organized reporting system, clear definitions of freedom of speech and racial harassment and new reforms to college curriculum to promote diversity and increase inclusion.
These initiatives have been supported with $9 million that will be distributed over the course of the next three years. One of these initiatives includes mandatory diversity training for all PASSHE schools, which will work to spread more awareness and increase tolerance across the schools in the region. KU will implement this mandatory diversity training, and it has already begun to do so as of last year. However, KU has not made any further changes since PASSHE’s implementation.
In combination with the $9 million backing, the initiatives that are beginning to take root throughout PASSHE schools should be able to develop the universities into more diverse and inclusive spaces for all.
While receiving funding for diversity programs is important, what is more important is that these initiatives are stepping stones to creating further equality for all students of color. The hope for these initiatives is that they create the foundations of ushering in true equality across college campuses everywhere. More information about the initiatives and what they aim to accomplish can be found at this link.