10/26/2011: An anonymous correspondent reports that VP Robin Holmes is closing the Office of Multicultural Academic Success and replacing it with something called CMAE, the Center for Multicultural Access and Excellence. They point readers toward uotruth.tumblr.com for more information and documents, and say that students, staff, and faculty are organizing protests. That blog says:
The goal is “diversity” not multicultural as representing students of color. The new CMAE has shifted the focus that OMAS had on students of color to any student that qualifies under the diversity criteria. Obviously these students need resources and programs but Non-trad and Students of Color should not be treated the same. This is an act of white washing, complete disregard for the actual needs of students of color, and a blatant attempt at assimilation.
As most readers know, since I’ve beaten the topic to death, my own belief is that special services targeted specifically at racial and ethnic minorities are generally illegal. I would prefer to see targeting by income and SES instead – a filter which would include many minorities. This is in part because of the law, in part because I think it is more appropriately targeted. President Obama has made the same point, about his own daughters. While I often disagree with Robin Holmes, she seems to be a pretty damn good administrator. It will be interesting to see how this shakes out. I applaud the students involved for getting involved, even if we don’t agree. And also for their excellent work getting and posting public records for the public to see.