The Collegian
Sunday, December 10, 2023

Staff Editorial: Diversity on campus

A selection of The Collegian's editors attended a brief performance by the Theatre for Social Change group on campus. Consisting of ten students from various fields of study, the group acted out a classroom scenario. The scene focused on one class' inability to shed stereotyped groupings including, gender, sexuality, race and Greek life, with a professor who was blind to that inability.

The editors discussed their observations with the actors following the skit. While we support the discussion of diversity on campus, our responses were mixed. Many of us were unable to relate to the unrealistic display of diversity issues in a Richmond classroom, as the actors portrayed students badmouthing each other for their differences as they sat at their desks. While we acknowledge that this was an overly-dramatized reenactment meant to initiate discussion, the scene portrayed was hard to relate to for some, as many of us have never been in a situation where judgment of certain groups was vocalized so openly.

We applaud the group's effort to tackle the issue of diversity, or lack thereof, on campus, but the approach may not have been the most effective. As humans, it is a natural trait to want to be with those we feel we will have the most in common with, and the show presented our campus as being more critical and less accepting than it actually is.

Nonetheless, we admire the TFSC group for its efforts to stimulate discussions of diversity, encourage consciousness of diversity and to increase awareness that there are people different from us on the sidewalk, in our classrooms and in the world.

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