Interested in learning how you can actively explore issues of diversity on campus? Check out these suggestions from the Office of Multicultural Development.
Suggestions for Exploring Diversity at Wheaton
While there are no "right" ways to explore diversity, we offer these suggestions as well as encouragement to always keep an open mind to different perspectives.
- During orientation try to meet lots of students from varied backgrounds and be genuine in sharing yourself.
- Seek out a faculty/staff mentor, especially one who understands issues of diversity.
- Intentionally participate in the activities of the Office of Multicultural Development and the organizations Gospel Choir, Koinonia, Mu Kappa, Unidad Cristiana, and William Osborne Society.
- Search for film opportunities and or other metro Chicago activities (music, literature, art, etc.) to both experience and reflect on issues of diversity.
- Sign up for coursework that will foster an understanding of diversity. Examples :
- Sociology of Racial and Ethnic Relations
- Cross Cultural Psychology
- ID Asian Studies major
- Urban Studies Certificate
- African American Literature
- Do some intentional research about your own ethnicity.
- Do some evaluation of your own attitudes regarding people who are different from yourself. For example, try taking the Implicit Association Test and share your results with a friend from another ethnicity.
- Intentionally build relationships across gender and ethnic/cultural lines.
- Be open about differences.
- Don't single out one person as the "spokesperson" for their race (or gender).
- As upperclassmen, choose to mentor/encourage underclassmen especially with regards to cultural diversity.
- Get involved in the many opportunities for student leadership including being a Teachers Assistant (TA), and address issues of diversity within them.
This list is by no means complete, but it represents a few ways to enhance your understanding of your cultural background and allows you to get to know others. We also recommend that while at Wheaton College you:
- Travel in one of the Wheaton programs or with friends, to expand your horizons.
- Spend some time getting to know Chicago.
- Study in groups -- it helps the learning process immensely.
- Effectively develop and manage your personal budget, which may include finding work. Utilize the Center for Vocation and Career in the search for work.
- Get to know departments on campus that are necessary for your academic success.
- Talk to older students before picking professors.
- Proofread each others' work.
- Invest in friends and networks: they are valuable beyond college.
- Use campus resources for future internship opportunities.
There are many wonderful resources available if you are looking to more deeply understand multicultural development. We have compiled:
- a recommended reading list featuring books which are widely available.
- a list of obscure but wonderful titles which can be accessed through Buswell Memorial Library on the campus of Wheaton College.
- a list of links to trusted organizations that promote diversity and understanding.
It is our hope and prayer that all of these resources will help you learn and grow.