ERIC Number: ED353024
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-Jun-5
Education for the 21st Century: Infusing Cultural Diversity into Policy and Practice.
Woodard, Michael D.
Community college education can be seen as a racist institution to the extent that it does not ensure access to services, access to learning and, ultimately, the completion of a degree program for students of color. Racism and intolerance for diversity restrict democracy in American society. Faculty and administrators at community colleges, however, have a critical role in ushering diversity into democracy. Among students of higher education, community colleges enroll 55% of Latino students, 54% of Native American students, and 43% of African American students. However, many of these students do not persist to graduation. Two-year college educators and administrators have a special opportunity and a special responsibility for the education of students of color. Diversity is not about the numbers of diverse groups represented; rather, it is about creating an environment in which each individual, without regard to ethnicity, gender, physical ability, or age can learn up to his or her full potential. The focus of diversity intervention is to move institutions from a mono-cultural and Eurocentric perspective towards a multi-cultural and pluralistic one. In a given institution, the first step in diversity intervention is to analyze policies and organizational objectives to determine the extent to which diversity is reflected as a value. Educational institutions must develop a clear policy statement on diversity; they should require that students complete courses examining non-European cultural groups and provide diverse faculty and administrative role models. Instructors should utilize multicultural teams of students to examine multicultural issues in the classroom. Finally, administrators should provide more in-service training for instructional staff regarding issues of diversity. (PAA)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual National Conference of the Community College General Education Association (11th, Hauppause, NY, June 5, 1992).