The University of Michigan-Dearborn has the opportunity to serve as a catalyst for positive change in the area of race relations and discrimination. Through the education of individual students and a concentrated effort to develop partnerships with leading race relations organizations in metropolitan Detroit, the campus is strongly engaged in achieving greater justice in our region.
“Difficult Dialogues” is an initiative funded by the Ford Foundation that aims to promote a campus environment where sensitive subjects such as race and religion can be discussed honestly and productively. By locating the discussion in the context of an open and civil university environment, students are truly able to explore and find together new understandings of the issues that often divide us.
An ongoing university collaboration with New Detroit, one of Detroit’s leading civil rights organizations, is “A Conversation on Race: Voices of a New Generation.” This forum has brought hundreds of students together on the campus for open and honest discussions of the issues of race and ethnicity that continue to persist in our society. These discussions have had an impact on the campus, and have served as a model for other colleges and universities as well.