Members of Temple Student Government (TSG), La Asociacion de Estudiantes Latinos (ADEL) and the Majority Action Coalition (MAC) met with Temple President Dr. David Adamany and several other administrators to discuss a proposal addressing the diversity question at Temple University.
Student leaders and administration would not comment on the details of what was discussed at the meeting because no final agreements have been reached. Student leaders will receive a response to the proposal during another meeting to be held in coming weeks with administrators.
“I think we are going to be able to achieve a lot of the goals,” Adamany said. “The university and the students do not have differences about how important it is in achieving diversity. The question is what are the best steps.”
Carter, Geller and TSG parliamentarian Tomas Varela authored the 10-page proposal. The proposal outlines the importance of diversity: “The diversity of Temple University gives many students who may never have had … the chance to learn from students of other ethnicities, other socio-economic backgrounds, other areas in the country, other nations in the world, other religions, other sexual lifestyles and so on. Temple has been given a precious gift and it’s something we should work to protect.”
“You learn a lot from people from different backgrounds,” Geller said.
Carter shared similar sentiments. “Diversity is something that has to be worked for – it is not a luxury,” he said.
In addition, one of the stated goals in the proposal asks for specific percentage increases in the number of black, Asian and Latino students. The proposal asks for an additional 10 percent increase in the black student population, a 7 percent increase in the Latino population and a 5 percent increase in the Asian population by the year 2010.
This goal, according to the proposal, will ensure that there will not be an ethnic majority on campus, which enforces diversity. Carter insists that the proposal gives percentages and is not implementing quotas.
Other goals listed in the proposal include university retention rates; diversity amongst faculty, administrators and staff; and adjustment of SAT requirements for applicants. Student leaders would also like to see a change in the scale used to rate applicants.
The Office of Admissions uses a 100-point scale in determining which applicants will be accepted into the university. Fifty points are allotted to the applicant’s SAT scores, 40 points to the applicant’s grade point average and 10 points to extra-curricular activities, letters of recommendation, essays and other materials. The suggested scale would allot 50 points to the applicant’s GPA, 30 points to the SAT scores and 20 points to other factors.
“I think there’s a great deal of opportunity for us to work on many of the goals,” Adamany said. “I am very optimistic.”
Present at the April 9 meeting were: Dr. Theresa Powell, Vice President of Student Affairs; Timm Rinehart, Associate Vice President of Enrollment; William Bergman, Vice President of Operations; TSG president Bryan Carter; TSG Chairman of the Committee on Diversity Affairs Rorri Geller; Charles Postell, Vice President of Student Affairs and Sarah Baker, Vice President of Academic Affairs.
Charmie Snetter can be reached at email@example.com.