Dismantling Racism in Institutions of Higher Education: The Role of Multicultural Centers and Inter-Group Dialogue Programs
Portillo Taylor, Alejandra L.
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Research has shown that the experiences of students of color on college campuses differ significantly from the experiences had by their white peers. In an effort to remedy this fact, colleges across the United States have employed the use of various programs and techniques. This project examines two specific programs: multicultural centers and intergroup dialogues. Research was conducted through a semi-structured interview process. Analysis of the data yielded four broad findings. First, multicultural centers and intergroup dialogue programs aid in the creation and promotion of quality student interaction on college campuses. Second, these programs can be exceptionally effective when ' working in conjunction with each other and with academic curricula, such as ethnic studies. Third, students are the direct beneficiaries of these programs in two main ways. First, students benefit individually by being able to place themselves as a racialized being within an appropriate societal context. Second, they benefit students at a collective level by bringing students of varying identities together to breakdown problematic ideologies and, in turn, work to promote a more socially just society. The fourth finding was that even though both of these programs are designed for college campuses their influences extend far beyond institutions of higher education.