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Chapter 9: Increasing Diversity

* Change Team (1988)
* In Pursuit of Multicultural Diversity (1988)
* Making a Difference: the James Baldwin Scholars Program (1994)



Change Team, 1988

TO: Budget Managers
FROM: The Change Committee
SUBJECT: The Change Team Report
DATE: July 1, 1988

A year and a half ago Adele set up the Change Committee to oversee "an in-depth project to address institutional racism" and to promote "multicultural organizational development." The initial phase of our work involved the collection of College employment and admissions data. Questionnaires and interviews were used in an attempt to get a reasonable sense of existing campus attitudes on a range of relevant topics, A summary of the main results is contained in the attached Report.

The next phase of the process is for all employees to meet in small groups within their respective units to discuss the Report, identify critical issues within their unit, and to develop strategies for change within their units and across the College as well. Change Committee members will be available to assist in these meetings. Out of these discussions will come a set of specific recommendations to guide us over the next several years. Initial first-year plans should be completed by each unit no later than November 22, 1988, and these plans should then be forwarded to the Change Committee for review. These initial plans will be implemented and then evaluated one year later. Revised plans and goals will be developed at that time.

We would appreciate any comments or suggestions you have about this process. Thank-you for your time and consideration.



HAMPSHIRE COLLEGE MULTICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT PROJECT

PRELIMINARY DRAFT OF THE
CHANGE TEAM REPORT
July 1, 1988

INTRODUCTION

During the Spring semester of 1987, President Adele Simmons charged a group of faculty, administrators, staff, and students to begin a program of multicultural organizational development under the guidance of Dr. Bailey Jackson, President of New Perspectives, Inc. A three-phase program was designed to include 1) data collection, 2) development of change plans and action strategies which directly address the needs of Hampshire College, and 3) an assessment of the impact of changes made and a revision of strategies where necessary.

Questionnaires were sent out to the entire Hampshire community. Approximately half of the faculty and staff responded along with one fifth of the student body. While this is a substantial sample, it is not random, and caution should be used in extrapolating these results to the College community as a whole. There were 37 minority respondents among the 361 people who completed questionnaires. These data were supplemented by interviews with a sample of 29 staff members, 21 students, and 10 faculty, Questions were designed to elicit respondents' perceptions of Hampshire's 1) multicultural mission, 2) personnel and student profiles, 3) management practices, 4) awareness of racism, 5) curricular responses to multicultural goals, and 6) the apparent commitment and supportiveness of individual Schools and units to the elimination of racism. In addition to this information, the administration provided admissions, graduation, and employment figures for the College.

All these data were compiled by Dr. Jackson in a "Multicultural Assessment: Data Summary" (April, 1988) which is available in School offices and on reserve in the library. This Change Team report will present the main findings of the "Data Summary" and provide an overview of racial diversity and perceptions about racism at Hampshire College, This information should help Schools, departments, and residential units initiate a process of problem identification and rectification in the near future.

1. MULTICULTURAL MISSION: PERCEIVED COMMITMENT/PRIORITY

The task in this part of the questionnaire and interview process was to determine the extent to which Hampshire College was perceived as having a commitment to racial diversity and the elimination of racism.

* 84% of all respondents felt that Hampshire had a commitment to increase racial diversity.
* 83% of all respondents felt a personal commitment to increasing racial diversity,
* 68% of white respondents and 48% of the minority respondents felt that the elimination of all overt forms of racism was one of the College's highest priorities.

2. COLLEGE STRUCTURE: PERSONNEL AND STUDENT PROFILES

Figures were collected on employment and enrollment trends at Hampshire.

* Out of 157 staff members during the 1986-87 school year, 8 were Black, Hispanic, Asian, or Native American.
* There were 14 full-time or visiting minority faculty members out of a total of 108 instructional positions in 1986-87.
* In a five year period from 1982 to 1987, 390 staff members and faculty were reportedly hired. This would suggest that if minority candidates can be attracted to Hampshire, frequent turnover in faculty and staff positions should provide a large number of opportunities for increasing the percentage of minorities at the College in a short period of time.
* From 1982 to 1987, American minorities constituted 6% of the student population at Hampshire.
* Foreign students accounted for an additional 5.4% of the enrollment.
* From 1982 to 1987, minority and foreign students withdrew or
* graduated at approximately the same rate as white students.
* 58% of all questionnaire respondents felt that Hampshire had not yet found effective ways to recruit people who would enhance diversity.
* Responses were equally divided in terms of whether people thought that all job applicants or students, regardless of race, had an equal chance to be hired or admitted to Hampshire. Given the ambiguity of this item on the questionnaire, it is not known how many of the respondents who felt that the chances were unequal thought the policies favored whites and how many thought the policies favored minorities.

3. MANAGEMENT PRACTICES: PERCEIVED ATTITUDES, BEHAVIORS, SKILLS, AND POLICIES WITHIN THE COLLEGE

* Hampshire's top administrators were perceived by 66% of all questionnaire respondents as being supportive of racial diversity.
* 60% of the minority and 38% of the white respondents thought that the administrators at Hampshire were not particularly skilled at managing a racially diverse workforce.
* 9% of the white and 35% of the minority respondents felt that faculty were likely to give extra attention to white students compared to minority students.
* 60% of the minority respondents and 23% of the whites thought that a student's racist remarks were likely to go unnoticed or unchallenged by a classroom instructor.
* 43% of the white and 72% of the minority respondents did not think that Hampshire has a rational procedure for solving problems relating to racial diversity.
* 20% of all respondents felt that too much attention is being paid to racism on this campus.

4. AWARENESS OF RACISM: PERCEIVED SENSITIVITY

* 67% of the minority respondents and 34% of the whites did not feel that their cultural orientation was fully appreciated at Hampshire College.
* 73% of the white and 36% of the minority respondents felt that
* Hampshire's faculty members were aware and sensitive to racism.
* 60% of the white and 42% of the minority respondents thought that students were sensitive to racism.
* Administrators were perceived as aware and sensitive to racism by 72% of the white and 40% of the minority respondents.
* 43% of the white and 24% of the minority respondents felt that there is reverse discrimination at Hampshire.

5. CURRICULUM AND FACILITIES: PERCEIVED SUPPORT OF MULTICULTURAL GOALS

* 52% of all respondents felt that the College serviced the needs of a diverse population through its facilities and curriculum.
* 45% of all respondents thought that Hampshire was viewed in the community as a leader in the fight against racism.
* 68% of all respondents felt that there are attitudes about racial diversity at Hampshire College which negatively affect the quality of the educational experience....(p.1-3)



In Pursuit of Multicultural Diversity, 1988

Memorandum

To: The Hampshire Community
From: Adele Simmons
Date: October 17, 1988

Each year I report to the community in the fall on issues of race and culture. My 1987-88 report is attached. It has been reviewed by the affirmative action committee, members of the administration, and the board of trustees. It is generally agreed that progress has been made, but that much more needs to be done if we are to become a truly multicultural community. I hope you will join me in working toward that goal this year.

In Pursuit of Multicultural Diversity
Issues of Race and Culture at Hampshire College 1987-1988
Report of President Adele Smith Simmons, April 1988

Preface

With the beginning of the academic year, we must renew our commitment to creating a genuinely multicultural community at Hampshire College. To provide some background and to identify some agenda items for the year, I prepare each year an annual report on the progress and the issues of the past year. The 1987-88 academic was not an easy one in these matters. It was a year often fraught with tension, and one that led to the weeklong protest occupation of the Dakin House living room by members of Students of Underrepresented Cultures (S.O.U.R.C.e.). I will report on the outcome of that occupation below. At the same time, it was a year of initiatives and progress, thanks to the efforts of students, faculty, and staff.

Even under the difficult conditions that arose, we moved closer to our objective through the curriculum, community education, personal and group activism, improved hiring and admissions practices, the work of the Change Team, and the S.O.U.R.C.e. agreement. It is critical that we build on what we have accomplished, that we create new avenues and opportunities, and that we not allow what we have learned to recede in our institutional memory.

The Change Team

During the spring of 1987, I asked a group of faculty, administrators, staff, and students to begin a program of multicultural organizational development with the help of consultant Bailey Jackson, president of New Perspectives, Inc. A three-phase program was designed to include data collection, development of action plans for change, and an assessment of the effect of the plans with provisions for revision...It is important to remember that the Change Team is not charged with recommending steps for dealing with racism; its next task is to discuss its findings with each budget unit or groups of units so that they can develop their own strategies and responses to the team's findings. Initial change plans should be developed by each unit by November 22, 1988, to be forwarded to the Change Team for review. Once approved, the plans are to be implemented immediately and then evaluated one year later.

The curriculum

Perhaps the most innovative--and controversial--curricular change in recent Hampshire memory was the Third World Expectation passed by the Senate in 1985. This policy is unique in the country. Each student is expected to present tangible evidence of having had substantive intellectual engagement with the experience of Third World people, broadly defined, and that this should bear some relationship to the student's main intellectual pursuit. A five-page evaluation of the expectation and related initiatives was issued last May. The report concluded that the Third World Expectation is receiving considerable support and is having a major impact on the curriculum. Students have begun to incorporate wide and varied approaches to meeting the expectation in their work, but more remains to be done. Recommendations for improvement include reviewing examination contracts and evaluations, returning them if coverage of the Third World Expectation is considered inadequate; the creation of school-based resource files; consideration during the reappointment and promotion process of student comments on faculty effectiveness with respect to the Expectation; and mid-contract review of the faculty role in helping students devise and carry out plans to meet the Expectation.

Since the implementation of the expectation, notable growth and change has occurred. For the past two years, special faculty development grants have been awarded for research and curriculum development with priority to those who choose a Third World emphasis. Nine faculty were awarded grants for projects ranging from work on new Division I courses in Third World studies to research on the relationship between Africanist and feminist epistemology.

The May report also noted that, by rough count, the number of courses with Third World content has increased from 31 of 151 in 1984 to 53 of 152 in 1983. The appointments of faculty with Third World interests or backgrounds have also increased, and several new faculty were appointed thanks to grants from foundations and the allocation of new positions....(p.1-2)

Affirmative action

We hope to increase the presence of people of color on our campus, and we have steadily sought to improve our faculty, staff, and student recruitment strategies. Three years ago I appointed an affirmative action committee, and two years ago I named Barbara Orr Wise the affirmative action officer. Standards for conducting searches for all positions have since been established. Search committees must show that a serious effort has been made to find qualified minority candidates, and the affirmative action officer and the director of personnel are developing a computerized applicant pool system for non-faculty so that those identified for one position can be considered for others. Six of 33 nonfaculty positions have been filled by new minority employees since last March; two others by internal transfer. There has been unevenness in the searches, however. Our most successful employee recruiting has been for faculty and student affairs positions. Last year, five people of color joined the faculty in music, photography, literature, chemistry, and law. This year appointments in non-Western philosophy and anthropology and Asian studies will add two Third World people...

At a year-end retreat, the affirmative action committee made several proposals for general improvements in search procedures and the general campus work environment which we hope to complement this year. These relate to the filling of temporary/casual positions, expanded orientation in affirmative action, goal-setting, and training in hiring procedures, and the appointment of an equal rights officer.

Discriminatory harassment

In a major governance action, the college senate adopted in April a discriminatory harassment policy reaffirming the principle that faculty, students, and staff have a right to be free from discrimination. This policy provides a basis for standards of appropriate behavior throughout the college, and a harassment officer will hear and advise action on those complaints that may be made.

Admissions

Our admissions efforts were the subject of controversy during 1987-88 as students expressed strong concern about the strength and focus of our minority student recruitment program. Students felt that little attention was paid to a plan devised by Michael Hawkins, a former admissions officer, and the departure of another black admissions officer was unsettling. Nevertheless, the admissions office worked aggressively to increase the number of minority applicants. The August admissions report showed a 59 percent increase in U.S. minority applicants and a 48 percent increase in deposits paid... The college continues to strengthen appropriate financial aid programs in support of the recruitment effort.

Environment

Students, faculty, and staff alike expressed a deep concern about perceived racism on campus last year. Many campus groups and offices acted independently to address the issues. In December, over 50 people representing nearly every campus constituency met in the Dakin House living room to describe their efforts and to exchange ideas. Throughout the year the house staffs worked especially hard to help students express their sentiments about racist incidents, and a spring community meeting provided a forum for public discussion. The personnel office organized three spring semester workshops for staff and administrators. These were led by representatives of the Management Staff Training and Development Unit at the University of Massachusetts and covered topics of cross-cultural communication, employee differences in the workplace, and how to improve race relations. The personnel office, building on the success of last year, is now organizing a new series for 1988-89.

The S.O.U.R.C.e. agreement

The concerns of students of color and foreign students were drawn into sharp relief last year when Students of Underrepresented Cultures (S.O.U.R.C.e.) occupied the Dakin House living room and negotiated with the administration a sixteen point agreement. As a result of the agreement, a S.O.U.R.C.e. coordinator has been hired, and part-time dean of multicultural affairs will be named during the year....

Many of the terms of the agreement are already met. A discriminatory harrassment policy is in place; an admissions minority recruitment plan is in place along with funds for minority recruitment events throughout the year; a large portion of library acquisitions will be dedicated to Third World studies; and funding for special programs is in the budget. The Dakin Living Room has also been designated as the cultural space for students of color.

Fundraising in support of multicultural community

In collaboration with the dean of faculty, the development office has been especially successful in soliciting grants and gifts for programs and positions in support of our goals....(p.3-5)

The year ahead

In the coming year we will continue to perservere in our prior initiatives, but we will create new ones as well. We have made particularly good progress in the curriculum, and we will continue to expand opportunities to study abroad as in the case of the January Term courses. Also, for the first time, the college will join a faculty and student exchange program that will create possibilities for first-hand experience in Third World countries.

This year we will perservere in our prior initiatives and efforts to create a multicultural community, but we will expand them and start new ones as well. To begin, the Change Team must begin its meetings with budget units this fall so that change plans can be drafted. I met with the affirmative action committee in September, and there is much yet to be done in our recruiting practices. Barbara Orr-Wise and Margot Roche of the personnel office are developing a handbook to guide us in both hiring and supervisory procedures, while workshops for all employees are scheduled this fall, and orientation programs for new employees are planned. The development office is continuing its search for support for programs and people who can contribute significantly to our awareness of the Third World and to our effort to build a multicultural community.... As I conclude, I am certain we will continue to add new ideas and proposals to these, and I ask you to join me in encouraging them.(p.5-6)



Making a difference: The James Baldwin Scholars Program at Hampshire
Sarah Buttenwieser. Hampshire Reports, Spring 1994.

Today's media headlines scream about crises: our cities don't work, our youth are in danger, our educational systems are deteriorating. The problems seem so enormous that we are apt to shrug our shoulders, unable to imagine any way we can make a difference. However, the James Baldwin Scholars Program at Hampshire College is out to prove that it can be easy to make a difference. The program's genesis can be traced to Hampshire's first urban conference in 1991, "Perspectives On the Urban Crisis." At that time conference participants from Springfield, Massachusetts saw that Hampshire had an interest in the issues surrounding the urban crisis, and believed that a partnership between the campus and the community would be a significant way for the college to do more than study that crisis. They believed the college could help solve it.

The Learning Tree, a community-based education program in Springfield, and Northern Educational Systems, a multi-service community agency, also in Springfield, had students who were eager for an educational opportunity. In 1992, nine students from these organizations became Hampshire's first James Baldwin Scholars. The program provides a year-long experience that helps urban students develop skills necessary for success in higher education.

Hampshire's Baldwin Scholars take courses open to all Hampshire students, live on campus, and participate in campus activities. Additionally, the program includes activities to assure that these students obtain a clear foundation in critical reading and writing skills. Mary Frye, Hampshire's advisor to the Baldwin Scholars, explains that the program is not remedial. Baldwin Scholars face the same academic demands as other students, but the program does address some of the inequities in secondary school education.

Frye says, "I have enormous concerns about public education's ability to overcome economic worries and social concerns so that school can be a positive experience for urban students."

Arthur Serota, director of The Learning Tree, agrees with Frye. He says, "More inner-city youths are likely to drop out than graduate." He frequently likens the experience of growing up in inner-city America to spending youth in a war zone. "Early funerals, AIDS, clinical depression, unemployment, family violence and street violence are everyday occurrences," he says....

Serota says that "minds, ambitions, creativity, and skills blossom and blossom in this program." Three years ago, when Hampshire's president, Gregory Smith Prince, Jr., first came to visit his agency, Serota says it was impossible to imagine the program that would emerge. "It's a model program," he says, "which is mutually beneficial; students from the Learning Tree receive the most unique and mind developing education possible, while Hampshire College is blessed with the visions, talents, and maturity of these students."...

The first group of Baldwin Scholars have completed the program; five of this group have matriculated at Hampshire, while others pursue their studies at other colleges or are on college tracks. In Fall 1993, six new Baldwin Scholars arrived at Hampshire, and all six are actively engaged in the academic and extracurricular aspects of campus life. Next fall, additional Baldwin Scholars are slated to join the Hampshire community, and the program's goal is to continue this expansion.

To Frye, the commitment to the urban communities surrounding Hampshire makes sense. It is easy for alumns from the Baldwin Scholars Program to give something back to their own communities. Already, students are interested in working in local agencies--Norman Domino plans to do so this summer--and speaking to students in local middle and high schools about their experiences. She says the success of the program is clear, leaving financing as "the most tenuous point."

Enthusiasm for the program has been great. A group of Hampshire alumns have begun The Fund For Diversity at Hampshire College, with an initial goal to raise funds to endow the James Baldwin Scholars Program and to make it self-supporting. Income from the endowment will cover the cost of administering the program, tuition, room, board, books, and other incidental costs for the scholars as well as related admissions costs.

The James Baldwin Scholars Program is an important step in creating a more diverse and thriving campus. Gin Gordon (70) and Chuck Collins (79) have been especially active in shaping the initiative, one of the first coordinated efforts alumns have made to endow a program. Having wide participation could help the project in pursuing matching grants, so all contributions are significant....

 
 

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