Megan Valley | December 22, 2016
During their campaign in the spring, student body president and vice president Corey Robinson and Becca Blais stressed diversity and inclusion as one of their top priorities.
Before the school year started, student government directed much of their attention to addressing violence from and against police officers, Robinson said.
“This year — after this summer — a lot of our efforts have been on police brutality and the unjust reaction, as far as the violence toward our law enforcement officials and officers,” he said.
Blais said the political climate — including police brutality and concerns post-election — was having a heavy influence on how student government was approaching diversity and inclusion, especially when it came to students protected under Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).
“I would say, especially this fall, that has become something that we’re focusing a lot of attention on,” she said. “How do we make our DACA students feel comfortable? How do we make them feel safe? And not only DACA students, but just students who feel marginalized, especially following the election.”
Robinson said Race Relations Week was intended to directly engage with and start dialogue around political issues.
Race Relations Week included a showing of the one-man play “The Cop” and a panel exploring racial justice in the context of opportunity. The panel included David Robinson, former NBA player and father of Robinson; David Krashna, Notre Dame’s first African-American body president; Christina Brooks, the City of South Bend’s diversity and inclusion officer; and Maria and Gabby Muñoz, undocumented students at Notre Dame.