Social issues constantly evolve, especially on college campuses. What is the role or responsibility of campus professionals who are closely connected to students in addressing social issues as they arise? In an effort to help campus recreation professionals answer that question, here are some resources available for social issues that are prevalent on many campuses across North America.
Please note this resource is to add to the great work NIRSA has developed through the EDI Resource Guide.
Race is a topic that can be especially sensitive for students and professionals. Research has shown that students often call for action against instances of racial injustice or racism and look to university officials for meaningful responses.
Students don’t feel safe and tend to worry when instances of racism are not addressed by university officials, and when responses are not forthcoming or are inadequate they have a history of issuing a list of demands.
Below are three articles about how three campuses have been impacted by racism:
The following resource includes lists and links to various articles, books, podcasts, and videos intended to deepen anti-racism work:
Food insecurity is a relevant topic because of its prevalence on college campuses. Here are some resources about what institutions have done or are doing to support students facing food insecurity:
Immigration poses many challenges for institutions of higher learning. Here are resources for campus recreation professionals that can be used to help students who may be dealing with challenges related to immigration while attending your institution:
Climate change is a complex topic that can’t be isolated to a single institution. However, here are some resources regarding higher education and the role of higher education professionals as it relates to climate change:
Gun laws can be a very polarizing topic. As campus recreation professionals, we need to recognize that students coming to college may not know what a safe classroom feels like. Institutional commitments regarding emergency preparedness may help them feel more comfortable on campus. In the event of a shooting on your campus or affecting your campus community, it is better for campus recreation professionals to respond directly–even if the response is imperfect–than to not respond because of fear of saying the wrong thing. Acknowledging that something happened can help with the processing.