Karé Urena, 20, a junior at Pitzer College at the Claremont Colleges in Claremont, California, whipped up controversy recently after she posted a notice on Facebook seeking a fourth-roommate in her off-campus home, reports the New York Daily News:
“POC only,” she wrote, using the abbreviation for “people of color.”
Ureña, who is black, added, “I don’t want to live with any white folks.”
The school’s president, Melvin Oliver,who last year became the college’s first African-American president, condemned the request, and released a message to the campus community last week about the housing ad, The Washington Post:
While Pitzer is a community of individuals passionately engaged in establishing intracultural safe spaces for marginalized groups, the Facebook post and several subsequent comments are inconsistent with our Mission and values. …
This is but another example to us that social media is not an effective platform to engage in complex dialog on seemingly intractable critical issues that have varied histories and contested understandings. They create more heat than light and invite extreme viewpoints that intentionally obfuscate the nuanced context that surrounds these issues. Pitzer offers its new 2-course Intercultural Understanding requirement and dedicates new curricular and extra curricular programming to address difficult issues of racism, diversity, community discourse and national and international political conflict.
Urena removed the controversial post after a fourth roommate, whose nationality remains cloaked, was selected. Even though the notice incited controversy, the school’s administrators reportedly have not take action against Urena.
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