Members of UW-Eau Claire Take Part in a Panel on Race Relations and Campus Progress

Some panelist’s call for more transparency from administration, while others ask the public to move forward.

Bailey Rieger-Borer

The topic of race relations and community outcry is not a new conversation for the universities of Wisconsin.

In 1925 at UW-Madison, a large boulder, considered a monument on campus, was documented and named after a racial slur. Eventually, it was changed and named after the former UW system president, Thomas Chowder Chamberlin.

In 1979, UW-Lacrosse featured photos of students dressed up as Klu Klux Klan members and others painted in black-face in their yearbook.

Again, on the Madison campus, a 2019 homecoming video was produced by the student senate which featured virtually no minority students, while around 2o percent of the student body are BIPOC, sparking student protests.

And in 2019, The Spectator, a student-run newspaper at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, published a story exposing racially charged Snapchat messages shared by the UW-Eau Claire Football team. Students flooded the campus mall in a silent walk-out, hundreds of signatures filled petitions, and a Rapid Action Task Force was formed in response.

A year later, a group of faculty, students, and staff of UW-Eau Claire are sitting down to discuss the recent decision to reinstate the individuals involved, as well as the future of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion on the university’s campus.