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Ruth Enid Zambrana

By Ruth Enid Zambrana and Victoria-Maria MacDonald | The Faculty Voice

"In this commentary we reflect on the construct of diversity, and the individuals and groups diversity data represents. What does it mean? What does it hide? What does it do? Two related phenomena have been observed: one is a number of articles critiquing diversity for its “cloudiness”; the second is that few faculty are genuinely enthusiastic about deconstructing the definition of diversity in-depth. We probe the emergence of the term “diversity” during the last decade–its evolution and meaning; we interrogate how this diffuse terminology masks racial and ethnic divides, throws a blanket over significant class/generation/and country origin distinctions and trends; and illuminate how the state of Maryland higher education system adopted and mandated particular data for diversity reporting for students and faculty. Utilizing racial/ethnic data from UMD and the Maryland Higher Education Com- mission (MHEC), we raise pointed questions for the community, and include recommendations for targeted institutional reforms."

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