On October 27 the Washington
Post reported data from a recent AP poll indicating that a slight majority
of Americans held negative attitudes towards African Americans, and that that percentage
had increased in the last four years. The same was true for Hispanics. Your VP
for Student Affairs is concerned that the larger national statistics will have
a ripple effect on your campus resulting in an increase in, if not outright
cases of, hate speech and racial intolerance. She wants to be prepared. She has
asked you, as her assistant, to head a task force to help her prepare a
response. The charge to the task force is to prepare a briefing paper that
addresses the following:
- Sets the institution in
context. What kind of college or university is it? How many students does
it have? How is it organized and governed? What difference does any of
this make in your response?
- Provides historical
background. Is this a new phenomenon in higher education?
- Identifies a plan for
figuring out whether, and to what extent, racial intolerance is a problem
on your campus, and whether the problem is on the rise over time. The plan
should identify what you want to know, where, and from whom you might
- What do you know about
student development theory and research on college students that informs
your response to the problem?
- What course of action do
you recommend based on your analysis of the nature of the problem on
campus (3) and your knowledge of the literature on college students (4)?
- Identifies a plan to
evaluate the recommended actions (pick one recommendation). Again, the
plan should include what "big" questions you want to ask and
answer about the intervention, what kind of data you would collect, and
from where you would get it.