DEI, minority students, EdTrust

EdTrust Report Says Anti-DEI Policies On College Campuses Are Making Students Of Color Feel Unwelcome

In the aftermath of the Supreme Court banning affirmative action in college admission and pressure from conservative parents and organizations, colleges are discontinuing their diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) programs. A new report from EdTrust shows minority students attending Predominantly White Institutions (PWIs ) feel more unwelcome.

The report, Creating Positive College Campus Racial Climates for Students of Color, interviewed Black, Latino, and Asian students at PWIs in 15 states to understand their experiences on campus.

The students expressed frustration concerning the lack of minority classmates and faculty at their schools. Additionally, the students were disappointed in the failures of administrators to recognize, report, and handle incidents of racism, discrimination, and microaggressions.

“There’s been a lot of incidents in classes on campus where White teachers or non-students of color have created racial issues, and [my campus] has continued to really just to look over and continue on with their day,” a Latino student said in the report.

EdTrust Senior Policy Analyst and Report Author Jessie Hernandez-Reyes said schools across the country are reversing the DEI policies they announced during the 2020 Black Lives Matter movement, and it is negatively affecting minority students attending PWIs.

“Despite numerous pledges to address campus diversity from university leadership, many students of color continue to report feelings of isolation, have limited support, and don’t trust campus leadership to appropriately resolve or address racial incidents,” Hernandez-Reyes said in a statement. “University leadership must act to address poor campus racial culture, as research consistently shows that students of color’s experiences on college campuses significantly affect their sense of belonging, perseverance, and graduation rates.”

EdTrust researchers say it’s paramount that the nation’s colleges reflect its growing diversity, and university leaders must create supportive and inclusive environments, where minority students feel safe and can thrive.

To achieve inclusive environments EdTrust researchers recommend:

  • Universities mandate campus racial climate metrics
  • Inform students of color about social, academic and economic support on and off campus
  • Address diversity through attainable goals
  • Design and implement a student complaint and review process

The Supreme Court’s ruling on affirmative action is expected to increase in the number of Black students applying to attend HBCUs.