Though Monday’s campus conversation had better attendance by members of the faculty and staff, students were the ones talking.
The conversation, which spanned about 90 minutes, was moderated by Associate Professor of History Catherine Denial and Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Sociology Gabe Raley, who encouraged students, faculty and staff to break out into small groups before coming together as a whole in the Trustees Room of Alumni Hall.
Students brought up several concerns including problems about identity and diversity on campus. Several attendees suggested hiring a new director of diversity, or someone who could be a go-to person for issues surrounding diversity on campus, instead of ambiguous forms on the website.
Still, students pushed toward more concrete plans, instead of continuous discussions and forums that are usually poorly attended by the college, either out of frustration or apathy.
“I’d like to see concrete engagement from faculty, staff and students,” Raley said after the conversation.
Both she and Denial agreed that a conversation like this would be replaced by more concrete discussions in the future. Still, they agreed that the conversation was effective and encouraged a discourse among faculty, students and staff.
“I was humbled by what people shared and the risks people took in what they shared,” Denial said after the conversation.