On-Campus Campaign Against Hate, Promoting Respect and Understanding

In the wake of incidents in which two copies of the Qur’an were found in toilets and other racial and ethnic slurs were found on its campuses, Pace University today announced the start of a campaign to intensify its traditional acceptance of all groups on camps regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender orientation.

Contact
Christopher T. Cory, Executive Director, Public Information, Pace University
212-346-1117, ccory@pace.edu, cell 917-608-8164

Note: Most sessions are open to media with press credentials. Please contact the Public Information office for details.

PACE UNIVERSITY ANNOUNCES ON-CAMPUS CAMPAIGN
AGAINST HATE, PROMOTING RESPECT AND UNDERSTANDING

“Not on My Watch” goal is to “encourage all of us to take responsibility,”
says President David A. Caputo

New York, NY and Pleasantville, NY, November 14, 2006 – In the wake of incidents in which two copies of the Qur’an were found in toilets and other racial and ethnic slurs were found on its campuses, Pace University today announced the start of a campaign to intensify its traditional acceptance of all groups on camps regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender orientation.

The incidents are under police investigation as hate crimes. President David A. Caputo, called the campaign “comprehensive and pro-active.”

The effort is known as “Not on My Watch.” Caputo said the name stresses the need for active cooperation from each member of the community, in actions ranging from understanding others to reporting incidents. “The goal is to encourage all of us to take responsibility,” he said.

In its first few weeks, “Not on My Watch” will comprise
• A three- hour panel discussion on sacred texts in all religions, including the Bible and the Qur’an, on November 20 in Lecture Hall North, One Pace Plaza, from 6 to 9 p.m. Taught by faculty members in the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, the discussion will explore: What is a sacred text?; How does reading a sacred text differ from reading a secular text?; What – if any – responsibilities do we have to texts that other people hold sacred?; Is it possible to desecrate a sacred text?

• Two hour teach-ins on the Westchester campus in Pleasantville Tuesday, November 28, from 1 to 3 pm, and on the downtown New York City campus Thursday, November 30, from 3 to 5 pm. A faculty panel will discuss the meaning of hate crimes and the impact that they have on the community. In addition, the sessions will provide an open forum for dialogue about the recent incidents and an opportunity for questions about different cultures, groups, or practices. Information on Islam has been developed in consultation with the Conference on American Islamic Relations.

• “Campus of Difference,” a program developed and facilitated by the Anti Defamation League, offered over the next few weeks to Resident Assistants and student leaders.

• “Faculty tip sheets” developed by the University’s counseling department for faculty members willing to lead class discussions.

• Circulation of a resolution condemning hate and intolerance passed by the Student Government Association on the Downtown Manhattan campus.

• Distribution of a wallet card listing emergency phone numbers for the University Safety and Security Department, Deans for Students, Residential Life, Counseling center, Health care center, Affirmative Action Office and Ombuds Office. This responds to input from students who said they weren’t sure who to call.

• A training initiative that started at the top November 8 with a 90-minute cultural awareness workshop for the 30 members of the President’s Council (senior administrators and deans of students and of the University’s six schools). Conducted by the regional director of the US Justice Department’s Community Relations Service, it explored the roots of disrespect, its painful impact, and protocols for reinforcing tolerance and acceptance and dealing with specific incidents.

• Training sessions for first responders including the campus security staff, to update them on procedures for dealing with victims and collecting evidence.

Longer-term activities are under development as well. A team of faculty and staff members working on internationalizing the curriculum as an “Internationalization Laboratory” of the American Council on Education this week agreed to explore new curriculum units on religious, racial, ethnic, gender, class, and geo-political differences. The goal, as one member put it: “to lead our students to new levels of respect and understanding.”

Reinforcing norms. The effort was developed under the leadership of Lisa Miles JD, the University’s Affirmative Action Officer.

On campus surveys show acceptance of others is a widespread norm at Pace. When an internal survey in 2003-2004 asked students to say if they agreed or disagreed that “I feel I need to hide some characteristics of my racial and ethnic culture in order to fit in at Pace,” only 10 percent of both undergraduate and graduate students agreed.

More recently, the National Survey of Student Engagement found Pace students above national norms in reporting that they have serious conversations with fellow students of a different race or ethnicity.

In planning “Not on My Watch,” Miles has sought buy-in from a broad range of campus organizations including the Pace University President’s Commission on Diversity; faculty councils in Downtown New York City and Westchester; councils of administrators and staff members; the Pace Coalition for Diversity, a 15-year old organization on the Downtown campus, and its Westchester equivalent, the Pace Westchester Diversity Team; student clubs concerned with multiculturalism, gender and sexual orientation including the Muslim Students Association, and the officers of other student clubs and the student governments.

“Pace does not pretend intolerance doesn’t exist,” said Miles. “It has not attempted to cover up these incidents and has faced them with the utmost concern, starting with the President’s messages to everyone on campus.”

Supporting students. She added that Pace’s practice is to support students who are affected by intolerance, giving them systems for figuring out what they want to do about it and nurturing them through the process. These range from individual counseling to mentoring student advocacy groups to faculty encouragement to study social issues.

“Not on My Watch” builds on pluralism at Pace that stretches back to its founding 100 years ago when it welcomed women to classes in accounting, then an all-male field. The University’s 13,500 students are 40% Caucasian, 8% Hispanic, 8% Asian/Pacific Islander, 9% African American, 6% International and 29% other/unidentified.

Recently-Escaped Slave to Join Presentation on Persistence of Racial Problems

This Roundtable discussion will link contemporary global issues of race and gender to the history of slavery.

MEDIA ALERT
Contacts: Christopher T. Cory, 212-346-1117, Cell 917-608-8164, ccory@pace.edu
Frank Lentini, 212-481-7000 ext. 3223, frankl@mbooth.com

RECENTLY-ESCAPED SUDANESE SLAVE,
FORMER GORE-LIEBERMAN CAMPAIGN MANAGER
TO PROVIDE FRESH IDEAS ON PERSISTENCE OF RACIAL PROBLEMS
FRIDAY AT 1:00 PM

Thought leaders debate the “centrality of slavery” in contemporary issues of race and gender
Who:
• Mende Nazer, Nubian who was sold into slavery in Khartoum at age 12 and who made a break for freedom in London, later writing her recent memoir, “Slave.”
• Donna Brazile, leading political strategist whose ideas currently help shape the Democratic platform on race and who was the first African American woman to run a national election campaign (Gore-Lieberman 2000).
• Michel Martin, Emmy-winning former ABC Nightline correspondent and Wall Street Journal reporter who will host a public affairs and cultural program soon slated to launch on National Public Radio.
• Leon Wynter, author and journalist who created and wrote a Business & Race column for The Wall Street Journal and has written for The Washington Post, National Public Radio’s Morning Edition and Marketplace.

What:
Roundtable discussion linking contemporary global issues of race and gender to the history of slavery. Will address such questions as:
• How can slavery be making comebacks in some societies well over 100 years after its official abolition in the western world?
• What is the equivalent of “whiteness” in one of those societies, the Sudan?
• Why don’t whites and blacks see their differing social circumstances more clearly?
• Since slaves are “made,” can they slaves be “unmade?”

Where & When:
Friday, October 6th, 2006
1:00pm – 2:45pm
Pace University Downtown Campus
Michael Schimmel Center for the Arts, 1 Pace Plaza (3 Spruce St. between Park Row and Gold St., just east of City Hall)

Participants are available for interviews. The discussion is part of a two-day national conference on the writings and life of Harriet Jacobs, the increasingly well known author who is the only African-American woman held in slavery whose papers are known to exist. For the complete conference schedule please visit www.pace.edu/dyson/HarrietJacobsConf/

Freeman Hrabowski to Speak on Cultural Diversity as Key to International Competitiveness

Freeman A. Hrabowski, PhD, president of the University of Maryland – Baltimore County (UMBC) and one of the few African-Americans to run a predominantly white research institution will speak about “Fostering Inclusion in Academia”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

** MEDIA ADVISORY**

EDUCATION INNOVATOR TO WARN
THAT CULTURAL DIVERSITY IS KEY
TO INTERNATIONAL COMPETITIVENESS

Innovative African-American president of University of Maryland/Baltimore County
to discuss lessons for widening inclusion
in Centennial speech at Pace University

WHO: Freeman A. Hrabowski, PhD, president of the University of Maryland – Baltimore County (UMBC) and one of the few African-Americans to run a predominantly white research institution will speak about “Fostering Inclusion in Academia”

WHEN: February 9, 2006, 12:00p.m.

WHERE: Pace University
One Pace Plaza, Multi-Purpose Room
New York, NY
* This event is free and open to the public
** Attending media must be credentialed

WHAT: Kicking off Black History Month, Freeman Hrabowski will join forces with Pace to speak about the United States’ capacity to respond to and embrace its growing diversity as a major determinant of global competitiveness. Hrabowski believes that colleges and universities will have a central role to play in preparing Americans for these changes.

Hrabowski has spent the majority of his professional career studying and improving minority academic participation and achievement. He has been enormously successful in producing a pipeline of minority graduates who go on to top graduate and professional schools and earn advanced degrees. Hrabowski was named a top innovator by Fast Company magazine.

This presentation is an early event in Pace University’s 2006 Centennial Celebration, marking Pace’s evolution into a full range private university providing opportunity and educating achievers in liberal arts and sciences, business, nursing, education, information technology and law.

For more information, please log-on to www.pace.edu/centennial

CONTACT: Cara Halstead Cea, Pace University, 914-773-3312, chalstead@pace.edu

Rosemary Mercedes, Pace University, 212-346-1637, rmercedes@pace.edu

Pace University Remembers Matthew Shepard, Oct. 2

Around midnight on October 6, 1998 two young men took Matthew Shepard from a bar to a deserted place a mile outside of Laramie, Wyoming. There, Matthew was tortured, beaten with a pistol, tied to a fence and left for dead. He was found some 18 hours later by two bikers. Matthew remained in a coma until Monday, October 12 when he died at 12:53 a.m. Matthew was 21 years old. Matthew was gay.

An Evening with Judy Shepard
Pace University Remembers Matthew Shepard, Oct. 2

PLEASANTVILLE, N. Y. – Around midnight on October 6, 1998 two young men took Matthew Shepard from a bar to a deserted place a mile outside of Laramie, Wyoming. There, Matthew was tortured, beaten with a pistol, tied to a fence and left for dead. He was found some 18 hours later by two bikers. Matthew remained in a coma until Monday, October 12 when he died at 12:53 a.m. Matthew was 21 years old. Matthew was gay.

Pace University will host An Evening with Judy Shepard on Wednesday, Oct. 2 at 7:30 p.m. in the Ann and Alfred Goldstein Fitness Center on the Pleasantville campus.

Judy Shepard, who lost her 21-year-old son to a murder inspired by anti-gay hate, is determined to prevent her son’s fate from befalling others, Judy and her husband Dennis, established The Matthew Shepard Foundation to help carry on Matthew’s legacy by embracing the just causes he championed. She is using her grief over her son’s death to make a difference. She has made the prevention of hate crimes the focus of her efforts, and she is now speaking to audiences nationwide about what they can do to make their schools and communities safer for everyone, regardless of their race, sex, religion, or sexual orientation.

The program has been sponsored by the Lubin School of Business, the Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, The Lienhard School of Nursing, the School of Education, School of Computer Science and Information Systems, Pace Law School, the Office of the President, University Athletics Department and the Center for Student Development and Campus Activities.

The event is free and open to the public. Pace University is located in Pleasantville, at 861 Bedford Road, use Entrance 3 for best access to the fitness center. For directions see www.pace.edu.

For more information contact the Center for Student Development and Campus Activities: 914-773-3767.

Pace is a comprehensive, independent University with campuses in New York City and Westchester County, and a Hudson Valley Center located at Stewart Airport in New Windsor. Nearly 13,500 students are enrolled in undergraduate, graduate and professional degree programs in the Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, Lubin School of Business, School of Computer Science and Information Systems, School of Education, Lienhard School of Nursing and Pace Law School.