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Ramapo College LogoWelcome to the Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Compliance (EDIC) at Ramapo College of New Jersey.

The office was created in October 2016 with the goal of providing point and coordinating leadership for diversity, inclusion, compliance and equity issues throughout the college.

About E.D.I.C.

EDIC is comprised of the following offices: Office of Affirmative Action and Workplace Compliance; Office of Title IX, ADA and Compliance Training; and Equity and Diversity Programs for Students.

EDIC coordinates with campus stakeholders, including the Admissions Department, the Office of the Provost and the Human Resources Department, to further develop Ramapo’s diversity and inclusion programming and its recruitment and hiring programs, in an effort to further increase the number of diverse students, faculty and staff.  In addition, all complaints of discrimination, hostile work environment and harassment and alleged violations of the New Jersey State Policy Prohibiting Discrimination, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and the Americans with Disabilities Act will be promptly and thoroughly investigated.

EDIC Supports BLM

LatinX Heritage Month (Sep. - Oct. 2020)

Each year, National Hispanic Heritage Month is recognized from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of ancestors that came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America. The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-

day period starting on September 15 and ending on October 15. The day of September 15 is significant because it is the anniversary of independence for Latin American countries Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on September 16 and September 18, respectively.

OPENING PROCLAMATION VIRTUAL VIDEO

Ramapo
LatinX Heritage Month 2020 Flyer

Click on the image to download PDF flyer.

Due to Covid-19, there will be no scheduled on-campus programs. To celebrate, below is a listing of recommended films, readings, and art.

EVENT

Between a Tango and a Danzón Documentary Virtual Viewing, September 21 | 6 p.m.

Professor Marta Bautis’ award-winning documentary, explores the cultural and historical influences of these two musical genres in Cuba’s society today. Filmed in the cities of Havana, Matanzas and Gibara, this documentary includes scenes with dancers, singers and musicians in neighborhood peñas and milongas. To participate in this event, please contact Tamika Quick for the WebEx registration.

LATINO IDENTITY: LATINX? YES OR NO?

There is a debate within the Latino community about the use of Latinx.

AFRO-LATINO IDENTITY:

BOOKS:

  • “Once I Was You” – by Journalist Maria Hinojosa
  • “The Grief Keeper” – by Alexandra Villasante
  • “Before We Were Free” – by Julia Alvarez
  • “The Book of Lost Saints” – by Daniel José Older
  • The House on Mango Street – by Sandra Cisneros
  • My Beloved World – by Sonia Sotomayor
  • Clap When you Land – by Elizabeth Acevedo

FILMS:

  • Entre un Tango y un Danzón – Follow Bautís’s journey through Havana, Matanzas and Gibara, as she explores the cultural and historical influences of two renowned musical Bautís’s research combines rich, archival footage with illuminating interviews, revealing a comprehensive understanding of Cuba’s artistic landscape.
  • McFarland USA (2015) The true story of a coach who turns seven Latino students with no hope into one of the best cross- country teams in the S.
  • Stolen Education (2017) Stolen Education documents the untold story of Mexican-American school children who challenged discrimination in Texas schools in the 1950’s and changed the face of education in the
  • Dolores (2017) Raising 11 children while wrestling with gender bias, union defeat and victory, and nearly dying after a San Francisco Police beating, Dolores Huerta bucks 1950s gender conventions to co-found the country’s first farmworkers
  • On the Seventh Day (En el séptimo día) (2017) José, the best player on his soccer team, is in a tough He’s in the United States illegally, his pregnant wife in Mexico is planning on joining him, and he is supposed to be at work during the championship game.

LATINO ART:

  • The Ponce Art Museum – The Ponce Museum of Art opened its doors on January 3, 1959 in a historic mansion in downtown Ponce. The first collection of pieces dates from 1957, when the successful businessman, philanthropist and future governor of Puerto Rico, Don Luis A. Ferré, acquired 24 paintings at an auction at Sothebys in New York City. The Ponce Art Museum connects the community with the wealth of Western art and its creators, from the 14th century to the present. It invites discovery, stimulates curiosity and encourages dialogue.
  • Smithsonian Latino Center – The Smithsonian Latino Center unlocks dynamic U.S. Latino stories that shape our national experience and It empowers a greater understanding and deeper appreciation for the enduring contributions of Latinos to our country. It preserves a growing collection of diverse stories and experiences that reflect Latino presence in our history and culture, and convenes conversations, inclusively, about the stories and connections that continue to inspire generations to come.

MUSIC & DANCE:

6/1/2020 Message to the Campus re: The Killing of George Floyd

The message below was shared with the College on June 1, 2020 with the full endorsement of President Mercer and members of the Cabinet. We stand together in support of creating a more just, equitable, and peaceful society.

  • Peter P. Mercer, President
  • Angela Cristini, Interim Vice President, Institutional Advancement
  • Susan Gaulden, Interim Provost and Vice President, Academic Affairs
  • Kirsten Loewrigkeit, Vice President, Administration & Finance
  • Nicole Morgan Agard, Chief Equity and Diversity Officer
  • Christopher Romano, Vice President, Enrollment Management and Student Affairs
  • Michael Tripodi, Vice President and General Counsel
  • Brittany Williams-Goldstein, Chief of Staff and Board Liaison

In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends” – Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dear Students, Faculty & Staff,

I am writing you with a heavy heart, in response to a number of events relating to discrimination, bias and racism that have taken place over the past few weeks, both at the College and throughout the United States.

Many of us were stunned when we observed firsthand and/or learned of the emails containing racial slurs and pictures that were circulated amongst our students on May 6th.  Sadly, two days after this email incident, many of us, myself included, took part in a 2.23 mile walk (or run) in memory of Ahmaud Arbery, a 25 year old unarmed black male who was shot and killed while jogging in a Brunswick, Georgia neighborhood. Ahmaud would have turned 26 years old on May 8th and the 2.23 miles signified the day he died, February 23rd.

Flash forward to last week, when many of us watched with outrage the video of a woman in Central Park who called the police and falsely reported that a black man was “threatening her and her dog”, when the video recording of the incident revealed the man did no such thing and to the contrary, merely asked that she put her dog on a leash.  And the culmination came the next day, when the video recording surfaced of the death of George Floyd after being pinned down on a Minneapolis street while a police officer is shown pressing his knee against George’s neck.

These incidents are just a few examples of the many acts of racism and discrimination that African-Americans have had to endure for decades and are still enduring today.  These issues are at the forefront now because of the use of cell phone videos and social media, but for many of our students, faculty and staff, they serve as reminders of very personal experiences similar to the ones that recently took place.  However, let me be clear- this is not a black, African-American or “person of color” issue alone- this is also a human rights and justice issue.

So where do we go from here? First, to our students, faculty and staff who are suffering mentally and emotionally from the events of the past few weeks, please know that I, along with the members of the administration are here for you and support you. We will continue to denounce all acts of racism, bias and discrimination at the College, both remotely and on campus, and my office will continue to investigate all reports of bias and discrimination.  To our students, as a reminder, the staff in the Center for Health and Counseling Services are available to speak with you to discuss and/or provide emotional and mental health support.

In recent years, our College has established the Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Compliance, we have mandated diversity and inclusion training for students and employees, and we have hosted town halls and other fora to ventilate concerns and to advance change.  But more work needs to be done.  In the next few weeks, the members of the Bias Response Implementation Team will finalize the College Bias Policy. Over the summer, my office will begin working on the creation of a Diversity Committee, inclusive of stakeholders at the College, to begin discussions regarding the planning and implementation of a College Strategic Diversity Plan that is in alignment with the College’s Strategic Plan and in particular, Goal 2 of the Strategic Plan (Cultivate and Support Equity, Diversity & Inclusion).

We recognize that members of our community may need a safe space to engage in discussion, process and healing about these events and that some of us are also looking for ways in which we can be of service.  Our office will be working with other departments and student organizations to create a virtual forum and we will share the details in the next few days. If you would like to lend your energy and compassion to the development of this forum, please contact E.D.I.C.

Finally, but most importantly, we must come together as a community and speak out against injustice and inequality. Artist Danielle Coke poignantly stated “Until you fix it in your heart and address it at home, nothing [will] change…”. We must ALL do our part, at the College and in our homes and communities to speak up, discuss, and denounce all acts of racism.

Best regards and continue to be safe,
Nicole

Nicole Morgan Agard
Chief Equity & Diversity Officer
Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion & Compliance

Reporting Bias

Bias reporting and related resources are available here.