Andrews University: Diverse but Divided?

Editor’s note: The following editorial originally appeared in the Student Movementthe official student newspaper of Andrews University, and is reproduced here with permission as part of an ongoing series featuring voices from Adventist colleges and universities.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/12085
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Remarkably insightful and honest analysis of the strengths of diversity on campus, as well as its challenges. Michael Nixon’s leadership has been outstanding and AU has become as good a model as we have for celebrating our differences and embracing our shared commitment to both the gospel of Christ and the Adventist church. Perfect unity, even in immediate families, is “devoutly to be wished” but always a goal to be passionately pursued!!!

It would be nice if these cultural clubs were re-designed to be intentionally open to everyone regardless of one’s ethnic identification . Each club could serve as a social hub supplementing the social environment of the university in general as well as the larger community. Like this: Cultural Centers | Yale College

I’ve Never been big on cultural clubs, I can see there are some positives if done correctly and used to mix more students but making groups based on ethnicity seems counter to the goal of the gospel. I’m past university age but at my job we have “Hispanic employees assoc” Philippine employees assoc, African America association etc. and I’ve never joined because I don’t see why as a Hispanic I need to belong to a club just because we share a heritage. How does that even matter? And so many of these clubs become more about the professional connections you can make and use to further your career and the career of others like you. Which seems discriminatory to me. Favoring other Hispanics just cuz I’m Hispanic isn’t something I’d ever want to do.

one thing I’ve never seen is “white employees assoc, or white students club…I wonder how that would be received?

Only Jesus will be able to teach individuals in the new heavens and earth how to navigate the 600 or so ethnic clubs that will make up his kingdom. It may be a bit confusing when we approach the long table at the great marriage supper of the Lamb, but rumor is that angels will place seating placards there according to ethnic lines so each group is consoled that “heritage retention” is maintained.

May your will not be done Lord, in heaven, as it is done on earth.

The biggest issue with ethnic based clubs is “What is the reason they were created?” If the answer to that question is not “foster better understanding between cultures” then the club’s will only perpetrate the divisions. If the membership is restricted to a specific ethnic group, then it cannot bridge the divide.

IMHO the best campus groups that cut across cultural lines, based on vocation or subject streams. This brings individuals from different backgrounds into a common setting. From that point the leaders need to 1) Recognise the diversity and 2) Foster inclusion. You cannot have one without the other.

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What’s the big deal… University experience is meant to get introduced to the various segments of society and thought. It seems there is over-reaction to being the “other”. I have spent my entire life being the “other”. As a war refugee in Sweden I had to acclimate myself to the Swedish language at the get go. After a couple years there, I had to learn another language and a conglomerate of cultures in a new school system on Long Island. Along the way, I became “the other” among “the other” when I joined the SDA church…

I thought this generation is all about diversity - especially in the Adventist community. There needs to be more acceptance of differences. In this current social climate there seems to be a fear of ideas different of our own, to the point where a culture of “cancelling” has appeared.

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On point. Totally agree. NAD Multilingual Ministries. Regional, Hispanic, Asia/Pacific… hmmm