Author: Sam Buisman
UW Madison unveils a plethora of new programs aiming to increase diversity and improve conditions for people of color on campus.
On Wednesday evening, UW Chancellor Rebecca Blank announced a suite of policies designed to diversity Madison’s student body and faculty, dismantle its predominantly White campus culture, and encourage further anti-racist work in reaction to the eruption of protests following George Floyd’s murder.
These initiatives include fundraising $10 million to recruit diverse students and staff, mandating implicit bias training for all incoming undergraduates and expanding training options for graduate students, creating an Office of Inclusive Education tasked with expanding social justice education curriculum, and providing $1 million in funding for research on race in America.
In her announcement, Chancellor Blank said that UW Madison has an obligation at this moment in history to listen to its students and faculty of color and take action.
“The past seven weeks have seen an outpouring of millions of voices demanding justice and equity for Americans who are Black, Indigenous and people of color,” said Blank. “Our university has been one focus of those demands. It is incumbent upon all of us to re-examine our commitments to racial justice and marshal the energy and resources to do more and better.”
While the severance of ties between police and schools has been a popular demand from protestors, Blank reaffirmed that UW Madison will continue its relationship with the University of Wisconsin Police Department. However, Blank said that the UWPD will implement a “Racial Equity Initiative” to reshape the department in an anti-racist manner over this upcoming year.
Blank said that the University is still finalizing some additional actions it plans to reveal soon, including a training program for UW faculty.