Campus climate OK, but could be better

Story by The Spectator Staff

According to the survey results of the campus climate survey, about 90 percent of people at UW-Eau Claire are comfortable with the campus climate. And that’s great news. The campus is doing a good job creating a comfortable environment, but there’s always room for improvement.

Only about 75 percent of people of color and LGBTQ respondents who took the survey reported they were comfortable with the campus climate, and that number is much too low.

Director of the Student Life and Diversity Commission in Student Senate Daven Raj suggested revised professor evaluation forms that could include classroom comfort and inclusion of diversity – which is a good response to the campus climate survey results.

Most professors should be open to feedback and adjusting classroom curriculum according to students’ responses. New evaluation forms would also show which professors are highlighting diversity and which are inadvertently creating a less welcoming classroom climate.

He also recommended revising what classes count for diversity credits.

Diversity credits are inevitably met along the way to graduation, but it can be difficult to remember where they came from or what impact they had.

The campus climate results should not be handled specifically by one office or organization on campus – and outgoing Equity, Diversity and Inclusivity Fellow David Shih said they won’t be – but instead, diversity should permeate every aspect of the university. There shouldn’t be just one watchdog to monitor campus climate; everyone should work toward improving it.

It’s also important to remember that diversity is more than skin deep. The Eau Claire campus boasts diversity of religion and gender, to name a few.