Given the hostile racial climate throughout the UC system and a multitude of issues adversely affecting Black students here at UCSB, we as concerned leaders of the campus community have created this list of demands out of true concern for health of current and future Black students here at UCSB. It is our belief that Chancellor Henry T. Yang must be called to action and held accountable in addressing the structural deficiencies and lack of institutional support for Black students on this campus.
The structural changes we want to be addressed are as follows:
1. We demand that the “Enhanced African American Recruitment Strategies” Plan drafted by admissions be implemented in its entirety with full funding from the Chancellor’s office. We maintain that none of the funding that is necessary to address our demands comes from the Student Affairs Division and that Student Affairs rightly manage the issues with new funding from the Chancellor’s office. The priority shift we are demanding must be on the institutional and structural level. There is no will power and concerted effort being put forth to recruit and retain Black students by the University. We are cognizant of the University’s strong efforts to reach a system wide goal of 10% for out-of-state students and particularly international students, and 25% for Chican@/Latin@ students. While we applaud the University for striving to reach these goals, we see no such effort and energy being put forth to recruit and retain Black students on this campus.
2. We demand an aggressive recruitment of Black faculty in disciplines and programs outside of the Black Studies Department as well as within the Black Studies Department. Hold the deans in each college accountable for the recruitment of Black faculty but also provide incentives for activities that promote retention of Black faculty as well as their recruitment. There is an inadequate number of Black staff and faculty on campus. This is particularly relevant in the retention of Black students because the overall campus climate is racially hostile to Black students, and the presence of the current Black staff and faculty has been imperative in the retention of those of us who are still here.
3. We demand the hiring of two full-time Black psychologists at UCSB. We maintain that the funding for this (which includes recruitment expenses) not come from Student Affairs Division for the reasons stated above. Currently, there is a critical need as we only have one Black Psychologist on campus. We as Black students need psychologists who share similar experiences in terms of racial discrimination and in dealing with the racially hostile campus climate at this University.
4. We demand North Hall be re-named Malcolm X Hall in honor and respect for the Black students and countless student and staff allies who occupied North Hall and symbolically renamed it Malcolm X Hall in 1968. Because of this student activism, the Black Studies Department and the Center for Black Studies Research was created at UCSB. We believe renaming North Hall will memorialize the history and contributions of Black students on this campus.
5. ￼We demand a permanent, student activism-centered display inside of North ￼Hall memorializing the history of the 1968 student takeover of North Hall, Currently a plaque has been placed outside of the inner side of the building, with ￼the drawback that the history of UCSB, its students and its Black Students current ￼and past is not properly memorialized. A student simply can enter and leave the ￼hall without knowing the legacy of the building and its role in changing the ￼curriculum and climate of UCSB. Inclusion of the memorial helps to highlight the ￼role that Black, Chican@, and White students played in making the University’s ￼boastful legacy of diversity a partial reality.
6. ￼We demand access to the contact information (such as email addresses) of all ￼￼self-identified Black incoming first year and transfer students to be available through student affairs mediums such as EOP or OSL so that we can ￼￼conduct our own familial and individual-centered models of outreach. We are ￼aware that retention of Black students is done in large part by current student ￼leaders and their organized efforts. That being said, we need to be able to extend resources to our community more systematically and rigorously to increase the ￼Black student presence and well being on this campus.
7. We demand access to Black Alumni through the implementation of a program that allows Black alumni to give directly to retention and scholarship efforts of Black students through both monetary and social networks. We want to ensure these additions are localized in the Black community so as to maintain and sustain our community.
8. We demand that all of these be implemented within the next 3-6 months.
BSU is sending out this press release, because we want to inform the UCSB student body of the steps we are taking to address issues of marginalization and systemic discrimination that we as Black students face at the university. We want the entire student body to know what we are doing to promote a more inclusive and better – resourced campus for the underserved Black students, staff and faculty. Moreover, we believe that increasing the presence and well-being of Black students on this campus will aid the entire student body as knowledge of diverse, and especially Black, peoples is critical to the education of all 21st century UCSB students.
Ours is a call for support from the rest of the University to assist us with this project. As a follow-up to this press release, we invite all supportive members of the UCSB community to join us in a follow-up meeting to these demands with the Black Student Union on Tuesday April 2nd at 5pm in the UCEN Flying A room. You can also support us by signing our online petition on this link. http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/black- students-demand-institutional-changes/
Black Student Union Mission Statement:
The Black Student Union of University of California, Santa Barbara exists to create a safe, supportive and inclusive Black student community. By providing opportunities for all students to increase awareness of Black culture with an emphasis on Black social, political, and intellectual traditions. The philosophy of THE BLACK STUDENT UNION
is to serve and unify the students of the African diaspora at the University of California, Santa Barbara, by addressing their needs. It seeks to identify relevant issues and initiate appropriate action in order to reduce or eliminate any impediments believed to be adverse to students and their continued wellbeing and matriculation. This shall be accomplished by providing educational, cultural, and social programs and activities that relate to the past, present, and future goals and aspirations of Black people. Furthermore, it seeks to provide enriching experiences and assuring continuing development of a progressive environment that is conductive to Black students in their quest to obtain a quality and meaningful education. The Black Student Union shall operate as an umbrella organization to other Black Interest groups on campus. The Black Student Union seeks to challenge its membership to actively address political, social and cultural injustices while at the same time celebrating and acknowledging the advancement of People of Color at University of California, Santa Barbara and beyond.
Office of the Student Advocate Mission Statement:
It is the mission and charge of the Office of the Student Advocate to facilitate open and honest communication between students and the University by providing free and confidential peer support, advice, and assistance to any student, student organization, or student group involved in a dispute with the University or any other entity within the University community. All staff members of the OSA shall be empowered to advocate for any student requesting the services of the OSA. It is the responsibility of the OSA to give students the tools and information necessary to empower them to either address their situation individually, or be assisted by an OSA staff member. In addition, the Office of the Student Advocate shall be empowered to promote students’ rights, as well as be empowered to challenge policies of the University on behalf of the students of UCSB.
Information on Black Student Activism and the 1968 North Hall Take over http://ucsblhp.blogspot.com/2012/04/black-students-at-ucsb.html.