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UCSD Makes Slow But Steady Progress In Diversity

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Aired 2/18/11

UC San Diego officials say they’re making steady progress in creating a more diverse campus, but students say there’s still a very long way to go.

— UC San Diego officials say they’re making steady progress in creating a more diverse campus, but students say there’s still a very long way to go.

Students gathered outside of the Price Center at UCSD to protest the 'Compton Cookout,' a racially-themed party near campus.
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Above: Students gathered outside of the Price Center at UCSD to protest the 'Compton Cookout,' a racially-themed party near campus.

It has been one year since UCSD was rocked by the so-called "Compton Cookout," an off-campus party that mocked black culture.

That event touched off a series of other racially-charged incidents on campus which led to a student uprising.

Minority students pressured UCSD Chancellor Mary Anne Fox to adopt a long list of demands to increase diversity on campus.

Twelve months later, university official Sandra Daley said they are making progress.

“We are doing diversity at UC San Diego. Not only because we’re morally driven to do this, but also because we know it makes sense.”

The biggest change is in the number of applications submitted by minority high school seniors last fall. The number jumped 27 percent, and transfer applications from under-represented students increased 19 percent.

The university also created a Diversity Giving office. Officials now aggressively seek private money to fund minority programs, scholarships and fellowships.

But some students are still not convinced the university’s efforts are genuine.

“I constantly have to be re-educating a lot of these administrators about why this is important,” said Mar Velez, a student activist who sits on the university’s recently formed Campus Climate Council. “These administrators need courses on critical diversity within the university. Those are genuine (actions) that can show me (they are) really trying.”

University officials said systemic change do not happen overnight.

UCSD is now getting ready to launch a student survey on race relations. A diversity class requirement is also in the works.

Comments

Avatar for user 'CaliforniaDefender'

CaliforniaDefender | February 18, 2011 at 11:28 a.m. ― 3 years, 9 months ago

A small extremist minority (ever campus has a similar cancerous lump) claims to be a "student uprising" but represents nothing more than the selfish agenda of a few.

What is most disturbing is the communist-like brainwashing as expressed by a radicalized student Mar Velez: “I constantly have to be re-educating a lot of these administrators about why this is important.” Mar makes UCSD sound more like a concentration camp than a university.

So very sad where UCSD is going, but what is worse is that taxpayer dollars are being used to push it down that road. Yet another reason, among so many, why higher education should be privatized.

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Avatar for user 'xicano'

xicano | February 18, 2011 at 4:56 p.m. ― 3 years, 9 months ago

CaliforniaDefender knows nothing about UCSD--taxpayer dollars make up less than ten percent of its total budget and the last Communist professor was forced to retire in 1970. So CaliforniaDefender is defending California from what exactly? Intelligent students who know more about making a UC education accessible to CA youth than overpaid administrators? Youth of color who are not afraid to speak out on behalf of those who will come behind them? The students who organized at UCSD last year will become our brightest leaders. The UCSD administration's full press publicity blitz to salvage its brand and make the general public believe the university is reforming itself is destined to fail. UCSD official Daley says "We're doing diversity." What in the world does that mean? How do you "do diversity"? The campus bureaucracy continues to be burdened by officials without a vision or a strategic plan and faculty who have relinquished public education to the corporations.

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