Race Relations on Campus Database

Periodically, JBHE Weekly Bulletin will publish a selection of racial incidents that have occurred on the campuses of colleges and universities. Here are the latest incidents:

• The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has filed a federal race discrimination lawsuit against Chapman University in Orange, California. The suit alleges that the university denied tenure to and subsequently fired a black woman because of her race. The suit, filed on behalf of Stephanie Dellande, who holds a Ph.D. in marketing from the University of California at Irvine, states that Dellande was denied promotion despite recommendations from all four external reviewers while whites with less stellar qualifications were promoted. (Orange County Weekly, 9-20-10)

• Two students from Nigeria were verbally abused and assaulted on the campus of the University of Colorado at Boulder. According to police, the students were confronted by a group of whites who called them “monkeys” and told them to “go back to their country.” One of the black students was punched in the face. (Colorado Daily, 9-20-10)

• After throwing four interceptions in a game against Ohio State, University of Miami quarterback Jacory Harris received a message on his Twitter account which read, “They don’t want a black quarterback here.” Harris is an African American. (Orlando Sentinel, 9-20-10)

• The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has filed a federal lawsuit against New York University. The suit claims that an African-born employee faced a hostile work environment because of his race. The suit claims that a mailroom supervisor at a campus library referred to his assistant as a “monkey” or “gorilla.” The assistant was told to “go back to the jungle” and “go back to your cage.” According to the suit, the assistant complained repeatedly to management but superiors took months to investigate the claims and then did nothing to stop the harassment.

• A cartoon appearing in the student newspaper at Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti caused an uproar on campus. The cartoon showed a couple wearing Ku Klux Klan robes standing near a tree with a noose hanging from one branch. The caption read, “Honey, this is the tree where we met.” The newspaper posted a statement on its Web site saying that it was sorry if anyone was offended. (Detroit News, 10-4-10)

• A white male student at the University of Minnesota-Crookston admitted hanging a wooden three-foot statue from a campus building. The figure was painted so it resembled an African American. The administration and police concluded that the incident was a prank and said it was not racially motivated. But a university spokesman said that the student showed “incredibly poor judgment.” (Grand Forks Herald, 10-3-10)

• Racist graffiti was found written on a white board in a residence hall at the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York. In a statement, the university president said that such actions are “unacceptable behavior.”

Blacks are 5 percent of the undergraduate student body at RIT. (Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, 10-5-10)