Southern Adventist University President Addresses Student Concerns

On February 13, the president of Southern Adventist University, David Smith, PhD, released a video statement addressing the university’s black community. In response to questions and concerns raised by students, the video shares Southern’s plans to better meet the needs of its students of color.

As Smith said in an email to students, “One of my goals as president of Southern Adventist University is to ensure that our campus is a safe and caring home for each one of you. However, some of you, particularly in the black community, have helped me understand that this has not always been the case for you, and for that, I am truly sorry.”

One of the initiatives announced is the immediate creation of a new vice president for diversity position. Southern has a diverse student body, with 53 percent of undergraduate students representing minority racial groups. In a ranking by U.S. News and World Report last year, Southern tied for most diverse university in the South.

WATCH Statement from Southern Adventist University President David Smith:

Further Reading: Racist Language Overshadows Black Christian Union Event at Southern Adventist University

This press release and video were originally published by Southern Adventist University.

Image: Video still.

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This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/8572

Nice to see this update. From what I gather, Southern has a good man at the helm. Southern has always been challenged to attract diversity, especially Blacks and African Americans, when Oakwood is so close. But from the description here, and this particular link (https://tinyurl.com/y8sr235e; 11.1% Blacks and African American), it sounds like they have made considerable progress on that front.

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The silence in response to this news item is deafening–and curious. Not sure what to make of it, Spectrum community.