The courses will also spark conversations on ‘racial equity and justice’
Georgetown University has approved a new “Pathways to Social Justice” requirement for students that teaches, among other things, the school’s role in racism and the history of slavery.
Undergraduates next semester will be required to take a one-credit seminar, “Race Power and Justice at Georgetown,” as well as two other courses that meet the “pathways” requirement. Such courses include “Business Arabic” and “Environmental Justice,” according to Campus Reform.
The approved subcommittee proposal notes that the “Race Power and Justice” seminar will “teach Georgetown’s history of enslavement of people of African descent and how that history intersects with national and global experiences of slavery and emancipation, settler colonialism, imperialism, and contemporary struggles for justice.”
The course will also “develop a common vocabulary for all Georgetown students to continue to engage in conversations about racial equity and justice and should be taken in the first or second year.”
The new requirement will replace the existing “Engaging Diversity” core educational requirement that has been in place since 2016.
Biology professor Heidi Elmendorf, who sits on the subcommittee, said that the changes were made to balance historical and modern-day perspectives.
“Some of this was about tackling issues of structural inequities of power and privilege rather than relying too singularly on diversity as a standalone concept. And some of this was about looking at our own world — including Georgetown — when we examine these issues rather than always looking elsewhere,” she added.
Subcommittee members also noted that changes were made to remove confusion about what counts as “domestic” and “global” courses to meet the requirement. The new system aims to streamline the process and limit the number of courses under the umbrella to satisfy the core requirement.
To be counted as a pathways course, professors will have to demonstrate how their class meets three of five learning goals: inclusive scholarship, intersectional approaches to identity, historical legacies of inequality and their contemporary impacts, imagining justice and national, regional and global comparisons.
Speaking with The Hoya, subcommittee student co-chair Amanda Yen said the new requirement will interrogate “structures of power, privilege and oppression” rather than simply recognize the “plurality of human experiences.”
The university’s main campus executive faculty approved the changes, which will take effect in the fall, beginning with the Class of 2027.
In October, Georgetown created a $400,000 annual “reconciliation fund,” a form of reparations to be used in community-based projects to positively impact descendants of the men, women and children enslaved on Jesuit plantation in Maryland.
The fund began as a student-led proposal aimed at atoning for the 1838 sale of 272 slaves, organized by two Jesuits to keep the university afloat. Georgetown has memorialized those sold and now offers preference in admissions to their descendants, but has yet to offer financial reparations.
Georgetown University did not immediately return Fox News Digital’s request for comment.
Source: Fox News