|Approved by the:
|Student Senate April 2, 2015|
The University administration, particularly in the College of Liberal Arts, was pleased to receive the student senate resolution in support of increased funding for the Department of Chicano and Latino Studies (CLS). We are happy to report a series of developments that move towards addressing your concerns and expanding CLA's active commitment to diversity in all its forms. Soon, CLA will restore the number of full-time tenured faculty housed in CLS to the historical precedent of two. Additionally, we will add a full-time faculty position shared between CLS and Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies whose work will forge connections between these disciplines and other disciplinary areas within CLA.
Amelious Whyte was also recently appointed to be CLA's first director of public engagement. Whyte has held a variety of roles at the University over the past 21 years, most recently serving as senior associate vice provost for advocacy and support in the Office for Student Affairs. His work will be focused on invigorating and innovating community outreach across the college, including for the benefit of Chicano and Latino Studies.
In the long term, we hope you will find promise in the implementation of the CLA Roadmap, the college's strategic plan for the college that focuses in large part on increased cultivation of diversity and attention to the evolving concerns of CLA's Race, Indigeneity, Gender, and Sexuality (RIGS) departments. The face of this plan and the changes it will represent for the college in coming years are only beginning to emerge, but at its heart is a desire to transform the college into its best self, making CLA a destination college for anyone and everyone.
To that end, we look forward to the Student Senate's continued engagement with this process and value deeply your advocacy and input on behalf of the Department of Chicano and Latino Studies as we plot the course ahead.
Resolution to support measures to fund and increase demand for the Department of Chicano & Latino Studies
The Student Senate urges the Office of the Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and the Office of the President to support increased funding-based support of the Department of Chicano and Latino Studies; and the Student Senate acknowledges the need for an Outreach Director for the Department and supports the hiring for said position; and the Student Senate supports the hiring of full-time tenured faculty members, with at least five faculty members' main department of affiliation being Department of Chicano & Latino Studies; and the Student Senate encourages the partnership of affiliated departments, like Spanish and Global Studies, to increase credit crossover and support demand for the Department of Chicano and Latino Studies.
Founded in 1972, the University of Minnesota Twin Cities Department of Chicano & Latino Studies is one of the oldest departments for Latino Studies in the country. The University of Minnesota Twin Cities is currently the only place to study Chicano/a Studies in the state of Minnesota. The University of Wisconsin Madison's Chicana/o/Latina/o Studies Department has double the core and affiliated faculty in relation to the University of Minnesota Twin Cities Department of Chicano & Latino Studies. The University of Minnesota cites a commitment to diversity, and highlights Chicana/o/Latina/o identity, on Admissions material. The Department contributes to the education of the entire undergraduate body, including major crossover from Spanish and Global Studies and Chicano & Latino Studies contributes to liberal education requirements, including the theme of Diversity/Social Justice, Historical Perspectives, & Civic Life/Ethics; and the Department had been previously granted permission, in 2008, to carry out three searches, two solely for Chicano & Latino studies and a third to be a joint appointment with the American Indian Studies department, but were ultimately ended due to lack of funding.
Additionally, people identifying as "Hispanic" are the second-largest non-white population in Minnesota, after Blacks/African-Americans, but are the second-smallest non-white population on campus after American Indians and Students identifying as "Hispanic" account for 2.7% of all full-time enrolled students, graduate and undergraduate, at the University and "Hispanic" students account for 3.4% of full-time College of Liberal Arts students. Further, the Latino population is expected to double in the country by 2050.
A similar resolution passed through MSA and is currently supported by La Raza SCC, Students In Solidarity con Chicano/Latino Studies, and is going through GAPSA & COGS.