by Logan Dubil
Point Park University’s (PPU) Student Government Association (SGA) announced on Mar. 7 that the school’s Office of Equity and Inclusion (OEI) will cease to exist at the end of the semester.
“The mission of the Office for Equity and Inclusion is to wholeheartedly foster institutional equity, diversity, and inclusion by raising awareness and implementing strategies and tools to shift mindsets,” the OEI website reads in part.
Student Government Association (SGA) President Dennis McDermott spoke with PPU’s student-run newspaper, The Globe, about the announcement.
McDermott told the publication that he will “do everything in [his] power in [his] last semester here as president to make sure this doesn’t happen.”
McDermott blamed the decision on university President Don Green, The Globe reported.
However, Managing Director of University Marketing and Public Relations Lou Corsaro told The Globe that the office is being dissolved at the request of the office’s faculty members.
“This isn’t Don making a decision unilaterally,” Corsaro said.
Corsaro told Campus Reform, “None of the work the Office of Equity & Inclusion does is being eliminated.”
“The University is seeking to provide OEI’s services in the best and most efficient ways possible,” he continued. “Final plans for what that looks like are still being developed. Point Park University remains committed to engaging with all students on issues related to diversity, equity and inclusion.”
On Mar. 14, PPU’s SGA doubled down on their efforts to prevent the office from being dissolved at a legislative meeting, The Globe reported.
That effort does not have unanimous support.
PPU student Carsen Brunn told Campus Reform that “if the objective of dissolving the office is to increase its efficiency in dealing with students’ needs, it feels like President McDermott had made a serious miscalculation in trying to stop this change.”
Additionally, PPU student Tyler Hillard is “looking forward to seeing how the resources that were put towards the Office of Equity and Inclusion will be used.”
“There are plenty of other things on campus that will greatly benefit from the money the university spent on their OEI,” Hillard told Campus Reform.
He hopes PPU puts the leftover money to good use.
Hillard, similar to Brunn, also explained that diversity-based offices fail to serve a purpose on campus.
“Having an office dedicated to common sense for a bunch of mature college students seems like a waste of resources to me,” he explained.
The office only existed for a few years, being created right before the pandemic hit. Its duties fell into three main categories: providing learning accommodations for students, processing and enforcing Title IX complaints, and administering diversity, equity, and inclusion trainings and events.
Campus Reform reached out to the Office of Equity and Inclusion, President Green, and Dennis McDermott for comment, but did not receive a response. This article will be updated accordingly.
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Logan Dubil is a Pennsylvania Correspondent for Campus Reform. He is currently a junior at Point Park University majoring in marketing and sales as well as minoring in political science. Throughout high school and his early years of college, Logan’s passion for journalism and conservatism saw a significant spike, which led him to apply for the Campus Reform Correspondent Program. Besides writing, Logan is vocal on Twitter and other social media platforms about the world of politics.
Photo “Point Park University” by Point Park University.