CMU is far from being diverse enough

Contrary to Jason Gillman’s claim (“A Diverse CMU,” 1/22/10) that Central Michigan University should decrease its efforts to promote diversity, his column actually highlights the need for even greater attention to this area.

Gillman cites comments from his conversation with one faculty member as evidence that the climate for staff and faculty of color has improved so much that we no longer need diversity initiatives. One individual cannot speak for any group.

I find it interesting that Gillman simply ignores the larger body of evidence that contradicts his claim, evidence that is based on a careful social science analysis of the subject. In addition, his claim that “there isn’t a department [at CMU] lacking a decent representation of various ethnicities and other demographics” is factually incorrect.

Gillman also concludes: “For the claims the survey makes about more than one half of minority faculty and staff reporting negative experiences, it seems there isn’t a flight from employment at Central Michigan University.” Gillman fails to recognize that those of us who are forced to deal with discrimination and exclusion in this university and community are CMU employees, taxpayers and everyday contributors to the well-being of CMU and Mount Pleasant. It is both inappropriate and offensive to suggest, as Mr. Gillman’s column seems to do, that people of color simply must “love it or leave it.”

Joyce A. Baugh Professor, Department of Political Science