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Elon University president announces plans to promote diversity, including removal of residence hall name

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    ELON, NC (WXII) — Elon University’s president announced new plans to promote diversity, equity and inclusion on campus, including the removal of a name from one of the residence halls.

The name “William A. Harper” was removed from one of the residence halls. In a video posted to YouTube, Elon’s president, Connie Book, said the name was removed because Harper “advanced racist ideas of white supremacy.”

“We understand that he played a role in an incident that led to the mob murder of an accused Black man,” Book said.

The plan also includes requiring all students to take courses that go deeper into understanding diversity, equity and inclusion.

The university’s bias response system will also be redesigned.

“We need Elon’s bias response to be as effective and transparent as the law allows, and I’m asking for a public dashboard that provides our community with data regarding incidents of racism on our campus as well as the actions taken by the university,” Book said.

Dr. Randy Williams has been named to the new position of vice president and associate provost for inclusive excellence. He will be the chief diversity officer.

Faculty and staff will have merit pay increases that tie into their commitment to professional development related to diversity, equity and inclusion.

Book recognized these are the first five of many steps needed to be done to lead to real change at the university, but that everyone is ready to take the personal commitment to bring about the change that needs to happen.

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Article Topic Follows: Regional News

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