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Center for Tolerance and Understanding

About the Center for Tolerance and Understanding

The Bronx Community College Center for Tolerance and Understanding (CTU) was founded in fall 2005 with funding from the Office of the President. The Center’s inaugural forum, “Truth and Reconciliation and the Way Forward”, launched CTU’s work at BCC.  Throughout the past several years, CTU has sponsored a variety of programs ranging from student/faculty focus group discussions to a permanent exhibition that highlights the diverse backgrounds of the entire BCC community. Our goal is to promote greater tolerance and understanding on campus through our ongoing activities. 

In spring 2006, we convened a college-wide advisory board to plan CTU activities and proceeded first to engage students, faculty and staff in defining the Center’s mission and goals. Draft mission and goals statements resulted from focus-group discussions held in May 2006 that included approximately 30 students and 30 faculty and staff. In September 2006, the mission and goals were discussed and refined by two groups of students, faculty and staff. The broad campus-wide engagement in the initial CTU planning will set the tone for CTU’s goal to promote greater tolerance and understanding on campus.

Andrew Rowan and Barbara Schaier-Peleg co-direct the Center.   

Mission

Our mission is to educate and empower the campus community to participate in an ongoing dialogue that facilitates interpersonal understanding and respects differences.

Goals

  1. To enable the College community—students, faculty and staff—to learn about our own stereotypes and biases
  2. To encourage constructive interaction within the BCC community by discussing and seeking resolutions for gender and sexual identity discrimination, racism, ageism, religious and cultural values misperceptions, and insufficient interaction among students and faculty and administration
  3. To create a non-threatening platform to discuss issues of contention on campus
  4. To coordinate outreach through various forums, including discussions, workshops, guest speakers, and films

Advisory Board

Co-Directors: Andrew Rowan and Barbara Schaier-Peleg
Simon Davis, Department of History
Neal Phillip, Department of Chemistry
Sahana Gupta, President’s Office
Gloria Rodriguez, Department of Social Sciences (Psychology)
Eugene Adams, Office of Collaborative Programs
Melissa Kirk, Office of Student Life
Ellen Hoist, Department of Nursing
Handan Hizmetli, Institutional Research
Kathleen Urda, English
Robert Maryks, History

Activities

In spring 2006, we convened a college-wide advisory board to plan CTU activities and proceeded first to engage students, faculty and staff in defining the Center’s mission and goals. Draft mission and goals statements resulted from focus-group discussions held in May 2006 that included approximately 30 students and 30 faculty and staff. In September 2006, the mission and goals were discussed and refined by two groups of students, faculty and staff. The broad campus-wide engagement in the initial CTU planning will set the tone for CTU’s goal to promote greater tolerance and understanding on campus.

CTU has been a cosponsor of International Education Week, including Dr. Peter Rose’s lecture on tolerance and diversity in spring 2006. CTU also cosponsors the annual Women’s Virtual Hall of Fame program.

CTU activities for the 2009-2010 academic year have included:

  • Personal Identities and Global Citizenship
  • Beyond Genocide
  • International Day of Peace
  • Where I Come From
  • Fostering Support for BCC’s LGBT Community

 

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