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Michigan State University

Undergraduate School

Mailing Address
Michigan State University 426 Auditorium Road
East Lansing, Michigan 48824
Phone
(517) 355-1855
Email address
admis@msu.edu
School Information
"Michigan State University is the nation’s pioneer land-grant university and one of the top research universities in the world. Every day, Spartans work to solve the most pressing global challenges while providing life-changing opportunities to a diverse and inclusive academic community." The university enrolls over 49,600 students and has over 5,700 faculty, across its more than 200 academic programs. (Source: https://msu.edu/about/facts)
General Information
In addition to implementing mandatory training for students, faculty, and staff, Michigan State University has taken symbolic steps to placate the activists. Under public pressure, the university announced that James Madison Residential College may be renamed, due to the namesake's associations with slavery. See developments below:

Actions Taken

Anti-Racism, Bias, and Diversity Training
  • Mandatory Anti-Bias Education and Development for students, faculty, and staff.
  • The College of Veterinary Medicine offers "DEI & Anti-racism Resources." These include "Anti-racism: The Heart and Mind of the Matter" and "Brené with Austin Channing Brown on I'm Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness."
  • The Women's Advisory Committee for Support Staff held an "Anti-Racism Insight Series," which featured sessions such as "Challenging Racism in Consumer Culture," "Intersectionality as Lived Experience, Radical Theory, and Social Justice Activism," and "Follow the Yellow Brick Road: Your Journey Toward Anti-Racism."
  • Michigan State University originally promoted (now backtracked) “Affinity Groups for conversation within identity groups” at its 2021 “Spring Conference on Teaching, Learning, and Student Success."
  • The university will, "Coordinate and manage compliance of required annual DEI learning for students, staff and faculty" and "Continue offering DEI Foundations online educational module for students, staff and faculty."
  • The university will, "Add a required component to New Student Orientation (NSO) to introduce MSU’s values related to diversity, equity and inclusion."
Curriculum Changes and Requirements
  • The university will, "Establish a curriculum task force, with consultation from programs and centers in which curriculum centers around DEI, to identify ways to incorporate DEI within university-wide undergraduate requirements" and "Implement a minimum of two DEI-related requirements in the formal curriculum for undergraduate students."
Faculty/Staff Requirements
  • The university will, "Require regular DEI training and identify other related developmental opportunities" for staff.
  • The university will, "Hold academic and major administrative unit heads and other leaders accountable for instituting DEI initiatives with respect to their faculty and staff as well as generating an annual report on their actions."
Political Actions and Support for Anti-Racism
  • The university posted an article titled, "Ask the Expert: What is critical race theory and why is it under attack in our schools?" The article partially reads, "It’s important to try to help youth understand how bias and oppression are institutional, structural and systemic, and not simply interpersonal. Young people are not colorblind or color mute. They see color and they talk race and racism in their own social circles and peer groups."
Program and Research Funding
  • A "$750,000 gift from Michigan State University Federal Credit Union (MSUFCU)" will fund a "Critical Race Studies Residency Program that will bring an Artist-in-Residence and a Designer-in-Residence to campus to enrich the life of student experiences and the greater community by facilitating practices of inclusion through art and design as part of the Department of Art, Art History, and Design."
  • A scholar received a $218,000 fellowship from the Andrew Mellon Foundation to extend "groundbreaking work in antiracist and anti-Blackness teacher education to pediatric medicine and public health."
  • The university will, "Provide incentives to deans to prioritize DEI-related research and scholarship when requesting to fill new or existing faculty lines" and "Establish an institutional social justice research fund to support startup funds for research on racial equity and justice conducted by MSU faculty."
Re-Imagining Policing
  • The university will, "Promote community policing and inclusive practices that connect students, staff and faculty from diverse backgrounds."
Resources
  • College of Music will host its 2021 MLK Day Concert with the theme "Good Trouble: Reclaiming our Democracy, Demanding Social Justice.”
  • The College of Education hosted a seminar "Anti-bias Training: Moving Dr. King’s message forward in a 2021 platform" which asserts,"Diversity is the range of human differences, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, social class, physical ability or attributes, religious or ethical values system, national origin, and political beliefs."
  • The School of Social Work's Racial and Social Justice Collaborative "will function as a facilitating entity that every member of the School has access to as we strive to make sure our work, communities, and selves are anti-racist and operate in the benefit of racial and social justice." The collaborative will "Engage current students in regular town halls to ensure their voice and experiences relating to racial and social justice matters are shared widely across all campuses and program options," "Host interns and student workers to assist with events, research projects, and other work to advance the mission of the Collaborative," and "Publish blogs based on current events and work happening around the School to highlight and our School as a prominent voice in the University and among peer institutions doing racial and social justice and equity work."
  • The university's Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives has an "Anti-Racist Path & Resource List," which includes "How to Be an Anti-Racist" by Ibram X. Kendi and "White Fragility" by Robin DiAngelo. The university also offers its "Anti-Racist Path: Series for dialogue, skill-building, and action," where participants will gain a "fundamental understanding of all levels of racism and how racism functions in our lives" and "Tools & practice exercises that will help you identify & intervene on racism at all levels."
Symbolic Actions
  • James Madison Residential college may be renamed to reflect anti-racist agenda.
  • The university will, "Conduct a cultural audit of architecture, physical edifices and spaces to ensure they are representative of the diversity that exists within the university community, paying specific attention to funding sources and building names."
Last updated September 20th, 2022
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