ASLMU signed a resolution voicing their choice to stand in solidarity with and support undocumented students on campus on Oct. 27. The resolution was drafted by RESILIENCE, a club that advocates for the rights of undocumented students.
The resolution states, “ASLMU understands that there is a need for affirmative assurance from [LMU] to further promote the pride, safety and vibrant well being of Lions who are undocumented.”
LMU provides resources to marginalized communities with services such as Asian Pacific Student Services, Black Student Services and LGBT Student Services. ASLMU says that they recognize the need for the same treatment, resources and support for undocumented students on campus.
The resolution states that it is the responsibility of the University to promote dynamic campus life for undocumented students who feel unsafe, unheard or threatened.
In light of recent events of discrimination on campus, President Snyder has recently announced the implementation of leadership development retreats focusing on the subject of implicit bias. The first took place at Loyola Law School on Oct. 27. The second took place on LMU’s Westchester campus on Oct. 28.
These retreats are the beginning of a three-year Implicit Bias Presidential Initiative that will bring awareness and sensitivity to issues on campus.
“Implicit bias refers to the attitudes that affect in an unconscious manner our understanding, actions and decisions,” according to an article by the LMU Newsroom.
The article goes on to say that one of the goals of this initiative is to bring an understanding of how our minds work, the implications of bias toward others and strategies for avoiding or mitigating bias.
“We are trying to reduce the activation and application of our implicit biases and, thus, change cultural perceptions and norms and create better (less impacted by these biases) decision-making across campus,” President Timothy Law Snyder said in an email to the Loyolan.
Approximately 200 students, faculty and staff were expected to have attended these leadership retreats. Abbie Armstrong-Robinson, vice president of Intercultural Affairs, hosted the event with Michael Waterston, Fritz B. Burns dean of Loyola Law School.
Rich Rocheleau, associate vice president for student life, thinks that this resolution will bring more awareness and sensitivity on campus and amongst students. Many students are unaware of how many undocumented students are enrolled at LMU and the challenges that they face when navigating a higher education. Rocheleau also facilitated a small group at the retreat on Friday.
“The President’s Leadership Development Retreat was just the beginning of LMU’s effort to educate the entire community — administrators, faculty, staff and students — about implicit bias, how it effects individuals and how to combat and reduce it. I think this University-wide effort to understand, combat and reduce bias is going to have a profound impact on the community once it is completely rolled out,” Rocheleau said about President Snyder’s new implicit bias retreats.