Yetunde Ogunsakin, Red and Black, February 3, 2012
A Loyola Law school professor made the argument to University students that white students could highly benefit from diversity during a lecture at the Chapel Thursday night.
The lecture titled “The Benefits of Diversity for White Students” discussed the opinion that white students receive academic and social benefits from multiracial schools.
“[Parents] should be considering the diversity of schools in a positive way when selecting what school their kids go to,” said Loyola Law professor Robert Garda.
Supporting voluntary integration plans and residential integration, considering diversity when choosing neighborhoods and schools, and questioning school tracking are ways white parents can help their kids achieve “cross-cultural competence,” according to Garda.
He emphasized although there isn’t a consensus on the exact academic benefits white students gain from racially diverse educational environments, cross-cultural competence is one of the social benefits.
Garda said this competence was what Fortune 500 companies looked for in potential employees.
“Their arguments are essentially, ‘We want to hire kids that have been exposed to a wide variety of ideas. We want to hire kids that are comfortable working in a multi-racial workplace, selling products to a multi-racial market and dealing with business partners with a global scale,’” he said.
Garda further expressed the opinion that in recent decades Americans have become increasingly concerned with the academic standards of schools and less concerned about the social benefits schools offer students.