The Antiracism Collective invites all members of the CSI community to join us to continue our discussion of what we together can do to undo the harm of systemic racism in our community and College.

In this first gathering of the Spring semester, we will discuss (briefly) the recent report of the Lumina Foundation, Balancing Act: The Tradeoffs and Challenges Facing Black Students in Higher Education, (February 2023). This report documents the barriers encountered by Black students as they navigate the world of higher education: racial discrimination and a multitude of external responsibilities. These barriers have resulted in lower six-year completion rates for any type of degree or certificate program than any other racial or ethnic group. The report may be accessed via Lumina’s Research Portal

The Lumina Foundation’s recommendations for closing this gap and creating a more inclusive and equitable educational environment include providing childcare on campus, increasing financial aid and scholarships, and providing more flexibility in coursework. As an institution, CSI has been working hard to provide all of these, but we all need to be a part of that solution. We can become better advocates for funding to support and broaden these programs, and develop greater awareness about the benefits of inclusive and responsive learning environments. In our classrooms, in our interactions with students and each other, in all that we do to support CSI’s educational mission for all, we are called to join this effort. Let us come together for an open discussion about steps we can take individually and collectively to foster this growth.

In addition to this discussion, the RELAY team of the Antiracism Collective will share its continuing work, funded by a CUNY BRESI grant and with support from Interim President Timothy Lynch, to address racial bias through restorative justice and to improve our campus racial climate.

We will also be joined by the new Chief Diversity Officer for the College, Dr. Jonathan Wesley, who will tell us about the mission and plans of the newly created Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at CSI.

We welcome participation in all in these discussions. There are many opportunities to join us in this work.

We also wish to invite any others who are also launching action projects aimed at fostering inclusion, diversity, and belonging on our campus to share their news with the community and invite support and participation.

Your input is vital to the efforts of the Antiracism Collective to help create a College at which we can all thrive.

Meeting Details:

Zoom Meeting Thursday, Feb. 23 from 2:30pm-4:00 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Register in advance for this meeting.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

By Dr. Catherine Lavender