Diversity and Inclusion in Higher Education

As part of LUC's Community Project course, students regularly grapple with questions of diversity and inclusion in secondary education. How do poverty and residential segregation shape the opportunities available to children? How do implicit biases operate in the classroom? What kinds of curricula are best suited for pluralistic societies in the twenty-first century?

These questions are also important in higher education. This coming Thursday, Leiden University will be hosting a Symposium on Diversity and Inclusion, featuring a keynote address by Philomena Essed and workshops by the New Urban Collective, COC Leiden, and SABR, among others. The programme is free and open to the public, and you can register for it here.

This week, Engage The Hague is launching its new Student Research page, featuring recent work by the student members of our community. In line with the Leiden Symposium, the first entry also takes up the issue of diversity. Specifically, it addresses socioeconomic diversity -- or the lack thereof -- in institutions of higher education. 

  Protest at the University of Amsterdam, 2015.

Protest at the University of Amsterdam, 2015.

Lena Volmer, who graduated from LUC this past July, wrote an excellent final paper for the Dean's Class in Spring 2015.  In it, she examines the benefits and challenges of promoting socioeconomic diversity in universities, using Leiden University College as her prime example. Along the way, she interviews many of her classmates and, building on their experiences and suggestions, proposes ideas for ways we can make LUC more accessible to -- and a more welcoming, happier place for -- students from a wider range of socioeconomic backgrounds.

You can read more about Lena's research here.  Or have a look at her valedictorian speech, delivered at the Koninklijke Schouwburg on 3 July 2015.  There she also addresses many of these important themes.



Thank you, Lena, for sharing your work with our community!