As part of the conversation about diversity and tolerance sparked by the photos of members of the Chi Omega sorority, the Council of Commonwealth Student Governments has come up with ideas to curb the ignorance at Penn State. Hoping to promote more of an understanding of diversity, CCSG representatives discussed the idea that students should be required to be taught lessons, intertwined into the curriculum, dealing with diversity in their First Year Seminars. Representatives also said that all students should be required to participate in the World in Conversation programs — which sparks conversations about different race, cultures, religions and ethnicities.
And, representatives also said there could be better promotion of No Place for Hate, a national initiative that supports schools in taking a stand against defamation. All of these ideas should absolutely be implemented within our community.
These types of ideas would allow us to reflect, thinking critically about what diversity means to us, individually, and to our community, as a whole. Classes that make this topic a discussion will create more opportunities to talk about these issues and it would force students to think carefully about them.
Classes can give students the tools — but it’s ultimately up to the students to act on these lessons learned in their own lives.
We need to start identifying with people different from ourselves more often. If we do that, it will yield a better understanding of these cultures unlike from our own.
If we do that, maybe the mindset to the offensive Chi Omega photo will change.