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Fall 2020 Updates: Visit meredith.edu/staying-strong for more details.

Anti-Racism Initiative

What is the timeline for Meredith’s initiative on anti-racism? 
Formally launched in Summer 2020, Meredith’s initiative on anti-racism is a comprehensive, long-term commitment. Specific actions and efforts are underway for ’20-21, with the guidance of experts on race and higher education. Our anti-racism work will include a campus climate survey that gives students, alumnae/i, faculty, and staff an opportunity to share their experiences. Our work is grounded in cultural humility, meaning we must acknowledge how our experiences differ and to what effect.  We will be hiring a diversity, equity and inclusion consultant, and we will review and modify practices and policies that disadvantage some of our students. The College’s anti-racism work will be thoughtful, well-informed, and ongoing.

We will share the progress we are making through regular email updates and a dedicated website.

What will Meredith’s initiative on anti-racism address?
Through the initiative on anti-racism, the College will 

  • review collected data from various surveys and reports to more fully understand the experiences of students, alumnae, and employees regarding race;
  • review the student and employee handbooks for clear expectations of behavior regarding race and consequences for violations of those expectations; 
  • incorporate the lessons of race and contributions of diverse populations throughout the curriculum;
  • provide anti-racism and microagression training for faculty and staff;
  • establish guidelines for the equitable treatment of all students in the classroom and through the honor code, traditions, recruiting, financial aid, housing, and more; 
  • review HR policies and practices for recruiting, hiring, evaluating, and dismissal;
  • be open to other aspects of the College that need to be addressed.

Historical Context and Naming

Is Meredith College changing its name or the names of any of its buildings?
Any decisions about naming and name changes are premature and can be made only by the Board of Trustees. At this point and in reflection of similar conversations at scores of other institutions, the College is building a process and a framework for understanding and contextualizing the college’s history in its times. That process and framework, once developed, will be shared with the wider community, and we will share routine updates.

What is the timeline for the work of the Committee on Naming?
The Task Force on Historical Context and Naming at Meredith aims to complete its work prior to the end of the year, with a progress report being released to the Board of Trustees prior to the end of October. The first meeting of the Task Force was held on August 12, 2020.

What is the composition of the Task Force on Historical Context and Naming at Meredith?
The Committee on Naming will be co-chaired by trustees Chair Carolyn Leith, ’85, and Vice Chair Dr. Yvette Brown, ’90. The inclusive committee is comprised of trustees, alumnae, and employees. The committee is diverse by race, gender, and age. 

What is the Task Force on Historical Context and Naming at Meredith responsible for?
The Committee on Naming is charged with developing a process for discussing the history and context of the naming and potential renaming of buildings at Meredith College. The committee is not responsible for making decisions to change the names of any buildings, programs, or other entities at Meredith. The Meredith College Board of Trustees is the exclusive authority on renaming decisions.

Opportunities for Involvement

I want to be involved in Meredith’s initiative on anti-racism - how can I contribute to this effort?

Thank you for your interest in participating in this important effort. We are called to be thoughtful in assessing our history, action and ongoing work. One of the most important ways alumnae/i, faculty, staff, and current students can get involved is by participating in the climate survey, which will be launched later this fall. As our work unfolds, we will share additional ways to get involved as opportunities arise. We thank you for your interest, patience, and support for this important work.  

Feedback can be emailed to anti-racismupdates@meredith.edu.