A Call for Change

Black Lives Matter. 

That was the first sentence in the faculty senate’s solidarity statement and action pledge document. 

The death of George Floyd has been an eye-opening moment for people of all backgrounds. Seeing another Black man choked to death while being recorded didn’t sit well with people this time around. 

Many big named companies around the world including Puma, Nike, Ben and Jerry’s, and even organizations on Quinnipiac’s campus have put out statements condemning the acts of the officers involved and demanding more education and justice for the Black community. 

The Instagram account @quenoughisenough has been posting different stories from current students and alumni describing different stories of discrimination that they faced on Quinnipiac’s campus.

Different student leaders on Quinnipiac’s campus have been meeting with administrators demanding change on campus. 

There have been other police-involved shootings and deaths throughout the 2018-19 and 2019-20 school year. There was even an officer-involved shooting in New Haven last year and there was not a statement put out by the university. 

Vice-Chair and senator from the School of Communications Margarita Diaz did recognize that and said the faculty senate decided together this year, that a statement needed to be put out in this case.

“The senators felt that this was a moment of particularly critical importance and that being silent at this time would have been egregious,” Diaz said. “So we formed a subcommittee to draft a statement of solidarity and that evolved into what was released yesterday [June 18, 2020] which included more of an action plan.” 

Below is what the faculty senate is committed to doing:

  • Interrogate our assumptions and reimagine our curriculum to make visible the insidiousness of racism and its ubiquity in all our disciplines
  • Reexamine the university curriculum to ensure each class reflects on the choices of authors, case studies, examples, and materials used so that students see themselves in the class as equally valid and valuable, and as contributors to the knowledge production process
  • Organize events and create spaces where all members of the university community can engage in difficult and uncomfortable conversations around racism and white privilege 
  • Reaffirm our commitment to amplify the voices of colleagues and students who are Black, Indigenous, and members of underrepresented groups, and to educate ourselves and our students on the systems that have led to, and perpetuated their silencing

The Faculty Senate urges the university administration to do a number of things as well.

Black Student Union President, Ja’Vielle Foy, thought it was, “admirable of the faculty senate to urge the university to change the way they’re facilitating education at Quinnipiac.” 

“To an extent I’m satisfied… It’s only words until the actual university does something,” Foy said.

Although Quinnipiac is experiencing a budget shortfall that will affect different things this coming year, the senate has designed plans so when things go back to normal the university can base their next steps moving forward off of that.