“We have all of these different segments of the population, and some of them do overlap in some ways, but many of them are their own little staunch group. That is what is so tough.”
-Rudy Spencer, President, University of Louisville Student Government Association
Face it; there are so many layers to people: race, sexuality, religious beliefs, gender and so on.
Those layers need to be recognized, respected and celebrated.
The University of Louisville is a predominately white campus and the number of female students outweighs males, with an enrollment of 11,409 female and 10,280 male, according to the U of L’s fall 2007 profile.
That says a lot about how society is different today.
In respect for that and many other differences, U of L celebrates differences throughout the year.
U of L fall activities include the Chinese Moon Festival, Pride Week, and Diwali. Each event is to honor and celebrate culture, differences and unity. Besides these annual events, students need places to celebrate diversity daily.
This is why it is important to have the following places: The Women’s Center, The Intersection that houses the offices of Association of Black Students and Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender, and Multicultural Center.
There are several Recognized Student Organizations including the Japanese Club, French Club, and Iranian Student Organization.
U of L seems to be trying to balance those scales.
But, race and culture are not the only avenues of diversity.
For example, U of L’s Interfaith Center is home to the office of Hillel (the Jewish student organization on campus) as well as offices for the Roman Catholic, Episcopal, Lutheran, Presbyterian, and United Methodist campus ministries.
Having places like these can make the college life a little more manageable. The places could be criticized for separation, but it’s more about having a place to celebrate who you are.
It’s not about tolerance or what the law mandates, it’s about the future. U of L students need to know about their future. The best way for them to know is now.
That includes learning about and knowing people of different skin tones, beliefs and sexualities.
Diversity is needed at U of L to reflect the mentality of the city and, indeed, the nation in which it resides.
Neighborhoods are different, the workplace is ever changing and family members don’t resemble each other as much.
This year’s presidential election reflects that: a possible U.S. black President or a female Vice-President will be sworn in on January 9, 2009.
Times have changed drastically and students, faculty and staff should be proud of that. It’s the contribution and increased knowledge of each person that has made this possible.
U of L’s classmates interact with one another, and differences need to be respected and celebrated.
This is important for both the present and the future.