Arts & Culture / Mosaic / October 1, 2009

Discussions of diversity

The minority population in the United States is on a steady rise. According to the US Census Bureau, by 2050, 53 percent of the population will be white, 16 percent will be African-American, 23 percent will be Hispanic, and 1 percent will be Native American. Lo Nuestro held a discussion about the influence of minorities in the country, as well as at Knox.

Members of Lo Nuestro, residents of Casa Latina, a professor of sociology, and a few students held the conversation. The discussion focused on the past contributions of minority groups, not just Hispanic, but also Asian and African-American. Discussion participants said it seemed like contributions were being made by these groups, but they do not get enough attention and therefore get thrown by the wayside. Breakthroughs in the public arena of politics, like President Barack Obama and even the mayor of Galesburg, are ones that show that minorities are starting to become more and more prominent.

Discussion also focused on the minority population at Knox and what could be done to make them more prominent.

Some of the points brought up included the need for more opportunities for other cultures to be shown, like having more than one I-Fair. Other suggestions were to try and attract more students of minority backgrounds to Knox and to have them see what these groups can offer.

Students also discussed things that Knox students can do to break out of their shells and mix with people who may be a bit different from them. Making a conscious effort to learn about a different culture without being socially awkward is a great way to meet new and different people. Diversity is something that would make Knox a more varied place to be.

Another topic discussed was how a person could go about this. Society often separates people into different groups and generalizes them. We tend to stick with the people who we are most comfortable with. Some said that Knox students need to make an effort to reach out to kids of different ethnic groups and make them feel comfortable and welcome at Knox.

The hosts ended the discussion by saying that they hoped students could take the bit of insight they gained from listening and hopefully start implementing it at Knox.

Population statistics from

Kristal Romero

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