Three Texas Christian University students released a list of demands Monday that they expect the school’s administration to adopt.
Diona Willis and Shanel Alexander, seniors and organizers of the TCU student national anthem protests, joined the managing editor of TCU 360 – the school’s student newspaper – Emily Laff to create the list of demands.
The list, obtained by TCU 360, begins by claiming that at TCU, students of color “are at a constant disadvantage”. The list also claims that minority students can’t attend the university without “receiving denigrating stares from other students, derogatory comments, and low expectations from other peers.”
The list then states that feeling this sense of “alienation along with trying to maintain a high grade point average and remain involved on campus creates unnecessary burdens that can hurt students in the long run.”
“Students and faculty go around campus spewing microaggressions and expecting students of color to pretend that what has been done is acceptable,” the list’s introduction states. “Students of all colors have recognized the disadvantages that certain groups have experienced on this so called, ‘inclusive’ campus and frankly we are tired of it.”
To remedy their “disadvantages,” the students and self-identified “Allies of TCU” are demanding the implementation of 14 new policies.
The list’s introduction wraps up with a threat to TCU administrators: “If we do not hear something regarding our demands within 20 days, various forms of escalation will take place until some if not all of our demands are met.”
The 14-part list begins by insisting that “TCU revise the Code of Conduct to reflect a zero-tolerance policy for racially insensitive and hateful speech”. The list also says that a “student led Diversity/Inclusion/Accountability board” must be created “to focus on all issues of racial insensitivity on campus.”
The list also demands that TCU “increase faculty of color by at least 10%,” to reflect the population of Texas.
In addition, the list includes demands for a mandatory “sensitivity training” for all students and staff addressing “racial intolerance” and “microagressions”, as well as a “100-million-dollar endowment” to “further support minority students and make TCU a more fiscally feasible option through non-athletic scholarships.”
The list then insists upon the creation of “a department of diverse studies”, an “Ethnic Studies course that will be a core curriculum requirement for all students”, and a “Greek-life diversity task force implementing a mandatory cultural sensitivity training.” It also demands the establishment of both an Asian American and Native American studies major, and a “university-funded speaker series” that focuses on diversity.
Other demands include “housing for members of both the Multicultural Greek Council and National Pan-Hellenic Council” and finally, “that the university’s flags be lowered when people of color around the nation are murdered by people who are supposed to protect and serve.”
Here is the list of demands in full:
TCU’s Chancellor, Victor Boschini – who met with the three students prior to the list’s release – responded to the public release of the demands with a school-wide email Tuesday afternoon:
TCU’s Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, Kathy Cavins-Tull, spoke to TCU360 about the administration’s reaction to the student’s demands.
“The students had some good ideas and some of them can be implemented right away. Others need to be examined in the context of our university,” says Tull. “We have always worked with our students, faculty and staff to make changes on our campus. We have some work to do, but we’ll gladly do it with our students, faculty and staff.”
Willis, Alexander, and Laff told TCU 360 that they plan to meet with Tull in the near future to “start working” on implementing some of these demands.