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Geography Statement on Racism and Inequality

The Department of Geography stands against systemic racial injustice and the social and economic inequities that afflict people of color. We acknowledge that as part of a historically, predominantly white institution, department, and discipline, we have not done enough in the past to address racism and injustice. We are saddened and angered by pervasive racism in our society, and we recognize that it is our responsibility to learn and involve ourselves in issues of race and bias, so that we can better instruct our students in the context of today’s social environment and our diversifying world.

As Geographers, we share a unique ability to contribute a spatial perspective to understanding the origins, consequences, and potential solutions for social and economic inequality. As a first step, the faculty listed below have pledged to take the following actions to address these critical societal issues:

  1. Our faculty will make a commitment to encourage communication and listen to student concerns on diversity, inequality, and justice issues. We will create and maintain a more inclusive learning environment inside and outside of our classrooms and labs.
  2. Our faculty will make a renewed effort to include more inequality and justice issues in our teaching and in our research, bringing the tools of our discipline to bear on these important societal problems.
  3. Our faculty will strive to make the department more closely resemble our broader community. This includes efforts to improve representation of diverse backgrounds in both our undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as in the makeup of our faculty for future hires.
  4. Our faculty will continue to value the inclusion of diverse voices in our community, providing equal opportunities to all students regardless of age, color, disability, ethnicity, gender identity, race, religion, sexual orientation, or socio-economic class. 

We hope you will engage these critical issues with us, as we work on building a more inclusive and equitable department, university, discipline, and society.

This statement was signed by all members of the Geography faculty:

  • Philip Dennison, Department Chair
  • Tim Collins, Director of Undergraduate Studies
  • Simon Brewer
  • Andrea Brunelle
  • Larry Coats
  • Thomas Cova
  • Elizabeth Dudley-Murphy
  • Tim Edgar
  • Rick Forster
  • Alexander Hohl
  • Andrew Linke
  • Zachary Lundeen
  • Phoebe McNeally
  • Richard Medina
  • Kathleen Nicoll
  • Mitchell Power
  • Summer Rupper
  • McKenzie Skiles
  • Neng Wan
  • Yehua Dennis Wei
  • Ingrid Weinbauer
Last Updated: 3/26/21