Dear Chancellor Fox,
The University of California, Irvine’s Black community and greater community condemns the highly offensive and racist event, “Compton Cookout” that was organized by UC San Diego students in mockery of Black History Month. These types of events, of course, are not specific to your university, but represent a larger problem of our society.
However, as Chancellor, it is your responsibility to make sure that all students obtain a comfortable and pleasant experience while attending UCSD. Currently, UCSD does not foster an environment that is comforting and nurturing to Black students. The fact that there are no current yield programs implemented to outreach to Black applicants, in addition to there being no African American studies major or department, is unacceptable. Your University shows a blatant disregard for Black students, who only make up 1.3% of the student population. Furthermore, your University is disregarding the mission and goals of the University of California to foster a diverse and nurturing environment. The University of California Diversity Statement states that:
“The University of California renews its commitment to the full realization of its historic promise to recognize and nurture merit, talent, and achievement by supporting diversity and equal opportunity in its education, services, and administration, as well as research and creative activity. The University particularly acknowledges the acute need to remove barriers to the recruitment, retention, and advancement of talented students, faculty, and staff from historically excluded populations who are currently underrepresented.”
The fact that UCSD has never had a Black population over 3% shows that UCSD is in gross violation of the UC Diversity statement and goals.
With that said, the UCI Black community and greater community fully supports the UCSD’s Black Student Union’s list of demands. Please satisfy these demands and support the students on your campus. It is not easy to achieve an equitable educational setting when the campus you attend is hostile toward you because of your race. Your University should do all that it can to alleviate these problems and ensure an excellent college experience for all of its students.
Due to the recent racist incidents, and the hostile environment fostered by your University, many African American students are considering withdrawing from UCSD, decreasing retention rates and ultimately yield rates. Please support the students by satisfying the demands to make your University better for ALL students and staff.
Black Student Union
University of California, Irvine