T D

Week 11 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response

Survey Question: How would you rate your satisfaction with the University (as a system) in reacting to student activism in terms of changing to fit the demands of students?

However, what I more deeply want to analyze is how strong of opinions students specifically have about the way that UIUC as a system reacts to activism. Through this, we can somewhat understand the amount of ambivalence about the topic among the general student body, which contributes to how the administration may view or change their work accordingly. If there is general satisfaction, the University would likely be viewed favorably and may continue with whatever measures they are taking. If there is a lot of dissatisfaction, there is still a lot of room for the University to adapt and change for the better.

The pivot table answers my questions by showing that the majority of students (24/44 students) have a neutral view on the work of the University in changing to fit the demands of students. If you compound that with the favorable (satisfied or very satisfied) views, then that is an additional 11 respondents. However, if you look at the number of students per grade level answering these questions, then it could be shown that younger students (i.e. freshmen and sophomores) tend to have a more optimistic and favorable view than older students (i.e. juniors, seniors, grad students). This could be attributed to how freshmen and sophomores may be less familiar with the activism on campus, especially as they are more likely to have a purely or mostly remote experience. Disappointment with the University is likely to build up over time as students mature and learn more about themselves and social inequities.

This data expands from what I have learned with my previous work, because it paints the picture of a bell curve of satisfaction. In the 60s for example, I would imagine that such a survey would yield a left-skewed graph due to the major student movements and activism. Nowadays, student activism has definitely been reduced and is seen as somewhat of faceless fringe movements rather than organizational efforts. With that in mind, students could probably be seen as generally less interested in enacting change at UIUC.

2a) Read and respond to the assigned readings (Post by 11 am on Monday)
o Marc Andreessen, Why Andreessen Horowitz Is Investing in Rap Genius
o Pages 152-158: Jimena Canales, “Mosaic: The First Point-and-Click Internet Browser,”
in The University of Illinois: Engine of Innovation, edited by Frederick E. Hoxie.
o Greg Newby, “My Prairienet Story”
Consider Jimena Canales’ description of web browsing and the Mosaic interface as “cultural
techniques” (152). Using the 3 assigned readings, select/list at least 5 different applications or
design features of Mosaic & Alternative Education Programs that evidence how web browsing
innovations affect not only the types and variety of accessible content, but also new modes of

(re)presenting and engaging with phenomena; in essence, an entirely new way of “being” and
“doing” in the world.
 
Consider how the readings frame Mosaic’s role in learning and social innovations. What
differences do you infer between Mosaic and other efforts to diversify and broaden opportunities
for education and information access? And what is Mosaic, anyway? Aim to mention 2 or 3
factors/features. If you were in the room in the early 1990s working with Andreesen, Bina, and
other young researchers on Mosaic, what would you have included or modified from what is
there today (particularly considering innovation for inclusion and accessibility)?

Week 10 – Lab Reflection + Reading Response

https://www.urban.org/features/where-low-income-jobs-are-being-lost-covid-19

If I could redo this visualization, I would try to emphasize the holistic impact on the system of jobs being lost. At the moment, it shows the estimated low-income jobs by category pre county or metro area but I think that it would also be helpful to see how this impacts each county percentage wise. Seeing the number per county is helpful, but it doesn’t show the magnitude of how it affects/decimates each industry. Tying into then COVID-precautions and policy could be interesting too in order to highlight how more strict policies may lead to less of an effect on each industry of a particular county or state.

Week 09 – Lab + Reading Reflection

Quotes

“And like I said, there were times where, you know, I was really close to the people that were protesting and doing all these things, and, you know, really getting in the face of administration, and I wanted to be that person so bad. I think I’ve always wanted to be that person. But I think I had to recognize within my journey that as I said, to the analogy, you need people in different positions for it to really work. And that was just my role. So sometimes it sucked, because I couldn’t be on the front lines. But I understood that my position was just as important in the journey to try to get what we want on campus.”

“You know, and it’s weird kind of seeing the different dynamics where a lot of people hear what I did my freshman sophomore year, and it’s like, Wow, that’s amazing. But if you’re a person of color, you’re Black, like you understand like, yes, that’s when it starts. No, that’s what it starts with freshmen and sophomore year, so then you can compete with the people that don’t have to think about it until junior and senior year because their experiences are a lot different than ours. So for me when it meant to get mentored, and what it means to mentor people is that understanding how our identity kind of goes into the professional process, organizational process, and just understanding it starts really early.”

“But if you think about it, like there are protests every year, right, people are mad at something every year. So you got to think about what separates this protest from all the other protests? … So imagine if they were responsive to every protest every year, like, how much money it would cost them? … Like this movement started before started before I even got on campus… So it’s like, you have to really realize how long the movement was right? And how this was not going away anytime soon… So I think, above else, above all else, that’s the reason why I’m in work is because we have people year after year, putting people on to the next step, putting people on to the next.”

a. Provide an example(s) of possible critiques;

There were critiques of living and learning being “divorced from each other … and that the mission of the  University was not being logically extended to the residence hall environment.” From there, I can glean that education at UIUC was not seen as intimate or particularly enlightening. Students did not feel connected to each other as part of a community nor did they find their coursework specifically meaningful. They did not feel as though their education connected to each other nor real life itself.

b. Identify at least 1 challenge the program faced from its inception and discuss why this was so;

A large challenge program was that it was born out of ambiguity and lacked structure. For that reason, its educational philosophy’s goals “were never made clear enough to serve as evaluative guidelines.” From there, it was hard to describe if it was effective or not, and this also came to a head between 1974 and 1980 as there was a lot of conflict due to its unique situation in the gap between the normal institutional process and the development of educational philosophy.

c. Consider: How does the evolution of Unit One/Allen Hall make visible the vulnerabilities of innovation? Where else have we seen vulnerability in innovation this semester?

Unit One/Allen Hall makes clear that innovation is not clear nor easy. There is inevitable pushback and an evolution in offerings, while the primary mission to connect and educate students in an interdisciplinary community remains. For years, the program was under scrutiny for its efficacy and value, and it was later deemed to be successful after increased funding and reform. At the same time, these processes can be slow. We have vulnerability in innovation this semester through the creation of the cultural houses on Nevada Street. They came after a lot of student activism regarding a lack of cultural safe spaces, but even in more recent years, there was a push for a new BNAACC house. There were definitely times, too, that there was uncertainty in funding and viability of supporting and increasing the number of Black students and professors.

Part 2

What is articulated in this proposal is that past efforts have been lacking and falling short. There are pressures to perform and achieve at a high level, but students are feeling disconnected from their work and education. There is a grand push for interdisciplinary collaboration as well as acknowledgement that that may include the shifting of funding. The pressures an undergraduate education may be beginning to feel is that it is not as “useful” or worth the money and time as it used to be. Thus, there is a consolidated effort into improving the undergraduate educational experience.

Week 08 – Lab + Reading Reflection

1b Scheduled Interview

Ron Lewis (Class of 2017, Finance) — former Student Body President at UIUC, #BeingBlackatIllinois movement. Meeting scheduled for Wednesday, October 21 at 4 pm.

1c Survey Questions

How would you rate your familiarity and participation with social justice-based student activism movements on campus?

Choices: Poor, Below Average, Average, Above Average, Excellent

How do you think UIUC compares to its peer institutions in terms of social justice-based student activism?

Choices: Poor, Below Average, Average, Above Average, Excellent

How receptive is the University (as a system) to student activism in terms of change?

Choices: Poor, Below Average, Average, Above Average, Excellent

What do you think should be changed or implemented?

Answer: long form

Estimate the number of Black students at UIUC.

Choices of 1%, 3%, 5% (correct answer), 7%, 9%, 11%, 13%, 15%

The I-Connect Diversity and Inclusion workshop is required of all incoming freshmen and transfer students. “I-Connect Diversity & Inclusion Workshop is an experiential training designed to help incoming students embrace differences and recognize shared experiences in order to build a welcoming and engaged campus community.” How effective would you rate the workshop in providing last change?

Answers: Very ineffective, Ineffective, Neutral, Effective, Very effective

Currently, all University students are required to take both a Non-Western Cultural Studies gen-ed as well as a US Minorities gen-ed. What are your opinions on this?

Answer: long form

Have you taken a U.S. Minorities gen-ed? How useful or interesting of a class was it for you?

Answer: long form

1d Expanded Survey Distribution Leads

EWeek Newsletter

Rebecca Xun – student activist

Reading Response

What question(s) is the author looking to answer? What sorts of data/evidence (primary sources) do they use to answer those questions (i.e. how do they analyze, criticize, interpret or summarize their data)? What key figures, events, or places within or beyond the campus might they build their story around? How do you plan to use this for your project?

Throughout Catching the Spark, the authors try to answer how systemic transformation of universities can be brought about by innovations set into motion through the work of student activists and data — as illustrated the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. First, they highlight the general atmosphere and state of college campuses across the country in reference to diversity and equity before delving into the specifics of programs at the University of Illinois. The authors build their story around the Pathways to Results (PTR) Initiative, as they themselves are part of that initiative. They do this by highlighting the initial challenges and how the PTR Initiative addressed or imbued each of them into their university proceedings. I plan to use the PTR Initiative to represent a genuine interest by the University to address the concerns of student activists in moving innovations for equity to scale.

Through Housing Is An Epicenter For Change, the authors are looking to answer how University facilities and services in the form of housing can work hand-in-hand with student activism to empower Black students and other students of color. They are quick to point out how Social Justice and Leadership Education is situated in Residential Life with three full-time staff as well as other staffed groups like the Men of Impact and the Queer Housing Coalition (84). #BeingBlackatIllinois began with a single email from a sBlack student leader to university administrators as part of the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin death and subsequent tense relations at UIUC. As well, the article points out specific departments in the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations — Diversity Education and BNAACC — responding to the student activism and call to action meeting. The authors also highlight support from a Latinx student as well as a similar hashtag trending at the University of Michigan (i.e. #BBUM: Being Black at the University of Michigan). This entire article goes into showing how student activism via protests, demonstrations, and clear demands have since translated into large scale strategic work that has been institutionalized across the university.

There were a wide array of points from the Harvard survey design guidelines that could be taken, but I will particularly highlight the ones that were less-covered in my survey questions. One of them was that survey questions should be tested on an audience beforehand in order to demonstrate viability and understanding by the general public. A lot of times, the way that a question would answered in one’s head is not how it is interpreted by others so minimizing that gap is key to surveys where respondents cannot ask follow-up questions of the survey designer. From there, the survey creator should iterate and adjust the questions accordingly. Even though surveys are typically seen as simple, they can still be improved upon for clarity and achieving its purpose. As well, survey questions should provide reference frames so that participants can understand the scope of a question and what they should be evaluating since it’s generally up to interpretation. Additionally, the order of responses can influence answer choices, so for that reason, randomizing answer choices can help — depending. Context is still key as answer choices that are on a scale would make sense to be ordinal, but other question types may work in a randomized format. Finally, questions should be straightforward and non-double-barreled as participants may not agree with both statements.

Week 07 – Lab + Reading Response

1b

Since my topic primarily focuses on student activism in more recent years, I garnered several emails from different archive staff members directing me to other more recent, online sources. Some of those sources were secondary sources, but I have some of the primary sources listed here below.

This source covers the ideas proposed by students, faculty, and staff to address systemic racism within the Grainger College of Engineering, as spurred by the Black Lives Matter movement in mid 2020. The task force came together to better inform the dean with specific implementations and goals.

“Report by the Anti-Racism Task Force to Dean Rashid Bashir, Grainger College of Engineering.” The Anti-Racist Task Force of the IDEA Institute, 14 Aug 2020, https://ws.engr.illinois.edu/sitemanager/getfile.asp?id=1594. Accessed 12 Oct 2020.

The University of Illinois System will be creating a system-wide Chicago-based academic center focused on racism, as well as providing grants, funding, lecture series, and education to address racism.

Clotter, Haydee. “U of I to launch academic center focused on racism.” Fox Illinois, 24 July 2020, https://foxillinois.com/news/local/u-of-i-to-launch-academic-center-focused-on-racism. Accessed 12 Oct 2020.

In this meeting, the Board of Trustees acknowledged that addressing systemic racism and social injustice was a priority of the University with ideas to address it including supporting faculty research in those fields as well as a series of working groups.

“Meeting of the Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois July 23, 2020.” The Board of Trustees, 23 July 2020, http://www.trustees.uillinois.edu/trustees/minutes/2020/July-23-2020-BOT.pdf. Accessed 12 Oct 2020.

In this report, the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion highlights the departmental and institutional efforts to be more diverse in the 2017-2018 academic year.

“Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Report 2017-2018.” The Office of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion, 15 Nov 2018, http://www.trustees.uillinois.edu/trustees/agenda/November-15-2018/r-nov-2017-2018-Diversity-Equity-and-Inclusion-Report.pdf. Accessed 12 Oct 2020.


1c

Describe your background and history at the University.

While at the University, what have (or did) you observe in terms of student activism?

What issues or challenges do student activists face?

How does the University react to such demands?

How do you think UIUC compares to its peer institutions in terms of social justice-based activism?

How effective do you think those methods of activism were and why?

What do you think should be changed or implemented?

What is your view of the future in terms of meaningful change by the University?

1d Identify Interviewees & Survey Distribution Leads

Interview: Obiamaka Onwuta, former #BeingBlackatIllinois member

Ronald Bailey, professor in African American Studies

Kendall Hester, Blacks and African Americans in Computing member

Anisha Narain, student activist

Ross Wantland, director of diversity and social justice education at the Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations

Dr. Yun Shi, director of International Education

Reading Response

PLATO was instrumental in distance learning applications as well as beyond as a two-communication system. Using PLATO in order to conduct research via survey distribution was very highly well-received with over 90% of survey respondents saying that they wanted to see more issues discussed on PLATO (Lamont 21). It was also outlined for usage as part of Delphi-like conferences or to develop strategies based on information from the community (Lamont 32). The Notes section of PLATO became message forums that anyone could post to, with its public, collaborative, group messaging environment that pathed the path for email later on (Dear). Communication-wise, PLATO had had emoticons since 1976, which was several years before ASCII emoticons were even developed (Dear). As well, PLATO was instrumental in pioneering education for blind students by acting as an instructor, tool for instructors, or tool to print instruction materials (Weber 20).

There a multitude of differences between PLATO and current distance-based learning platforms like Khan Academy, Coursera, and YouTube. For the former two, their value is prided on showing examples to users and letting users apply their skills to new problems. In that way, it also caters question sets and points to their user base so that they can focus their efforts on learning their weaker skills. This generally is a more recent invention I’d say due to the rise of technology and consolidated efforts into the user experience. As well, the hardware + software aspect of PLATO made it difficult to use and inaccessible for many. While arguably still inaccessible to the majority of the global population, online-based learning formats nowadays can be used by anyone with a phone, tablet, or computer with an internet connection, which now applies to vastly more people.

Week 06 – Lab + Reading Response

1b) Lab Assignment: Project Development

In order to explore the question of the effect of student activism on the University, I need to also cover the effect that activism had on non-University departments. This resource helps highlight the effect that it had on pressuring large entities like Facebook to take down hurtful pages.

In order to answer my question of the effect of student activism on the University, I need to learn more about what student activists have been doing. This resource helps explore the public pressures and demands of these student groups.

Housing Is An Epicenter For Change: A Narrative of Students and Staff Championing Campus Social Change Movements by Kimberly Otchere, Tekita Bankhead, Ayanna Williams.

In order to answer the question of the results of student activism in changing UIUC, I need to find out more about large-scale student activist efforts and their effects on specific aspects of the University. This resource helps explore the relationship between Black students on campus in the mid 2010s and the results of their activism on housing at UIUC.

Catching the Spark: Student Activism and Student Data as a Catalyst for Systemic Transformation by Debra Bragg, Heather McCambly, Brian Durham.

In order to answer the question of the results of student activism in changing UIUC, I need to find out more about student activism and its relationships with other entities. This resource helps explore the role of student activism and data as catalysts for change.

In one more paragraph, begin to sketch out what other resources, documents, or interviews with
living or past individuals would help you to flesh out the research you hope to complete.
Consider the “so what” question: why would your research findings be relevant to campus or
community leaders today?

I want to look into other resources covering the anti-Black rhetoric and backlash online and in person, perhaps in response to their protests and demands. There seems to be an increase in the usage of technology, so I think that could be an interesting aspect to consider. As well, I would want to talk to individuals involved with these efforts (e.g. townhalls, protests) and talk to them about how successful they believe these efforts are. In terms of interviewing or surveying current University students, I would be curious to find out if current students know about these movements or even acknowledge its effects which have since changed their University experience. These findings would be relevant to campus leaders today, because some of the changes that were brought about due to student activism can still be adjusted, reformed, or improved — especially if they are not accomplishing their intended purpose.


1c) Drafting Interview & Survey Questions

What percentage of undergrad students at UIUC do you think are Black?

Do you remember I-Connect? What’s your opinion on it?

All University students are required to take both a Non-Western Cultural Studies gen-ed as well as a US Minorities gen-ed. What are your opinions on this? Why do you think they are both required?

Have you taken a U.S. Minorities gen-ed? How useful or interesting of a class was it for you?

Reading Response

In order to develop cybernetics practice, Heinz von Foerster and other members of the Biological Computing Lab got talented at accruing military funding for their research; however, that ultimate backfired on them during the anti-war movement of the ’70s. As part of cybernetics heuristics, von Foerster also emphasized the drastic need for looking at things from the eyes of the organism, not the observer. This went hand-in-hand with the idea of cybernetics being a more alternative take to view biological systems with the acknowledgement of the system of the system. Another strategy that von Foerster used was to teach several LAS 199 interdisciplinary seminars. Through classes such as these, von Foerster was able to to establish cybernetics as a field in many student’s minds as opportunities to explore.

Though the female-sounding name of Valerie Lamont was mentioned, what percentage of those affiliated with BCL at the student and then the staff/faculty levels were there (Prutzer)?

Since the BCL was quite influential yet largely lacks recognition nowadays, in terms of scope and impact on undergraduate students, what’s the modern equivalent to BCL today (Hutchinson)?

As a German/non-American, did Heinz von Foerster ever face any tension or difficulty as a researcher/director of the BCL due to his background (Anderson)?

Though funding for cybernetics eventually dissolved and got funneled into fields like Computer Science, Robotics, and Artificial Intelligence, would there be modern-day value in investing back into cybernetics (Anderson)?

Week 05 – Lab + Reading Reflection

1a

Are there any modern/more recent archives or resources that cover student activism at the University of Illinois?

How might I go about finding more recent information about student activism?

I would want to look at any sections covering the history of student life, especially as it pertains to “political,” “social,” “activism,” “police,” “anti-Black,” and “civil unrest.” For a topic like mine which covers modern student activism, the terminology of “defund the police” may be more recent, but the idea of discontent with an authority like the police has been around for decades. It just may be more difficult to find records covering it.

1b

Chronology of Campus Protests is useful in understanding the campus and community events from 1948 through 1972 in a wide array of student activism causes such as free speech, political protests, civil rights and anti Vietnam war demonstrations, and community, union, and voting initiatives. 

Looking at a document like this highlights the anti-Black backlash by fellow students on campus in more recent years.

Along with the last example, a Facebook group such as this is targeted against Blacks, Muslims, and Mexicans in an inflammatory way.

Discourse about the university and their values in a progressive and critical manner, as targeted to people of color, showcases the activism and higher philosophy of students in regard to race, class accessibility, and transformation.

Reading Response

In Andrew Yang’s book, The War on Normal People, he illustrates the dichotomy between the privileges of the many well-educated and affluent individuals who may be reading his book and the “normal people,” or statistically-typical person of the United States. He does this to highlight the conclusion that many statistics out there do little to cover the massive effect that automation is and will be bringing to the job economy, and while many Americans will be affected by it, it will especially affect the less-skilled and less-educated masses. 

Throughout the few chapters we read, Yang used data and statistics to back up his arguments concerning the dichotomy between those would likely be reading his book and the actual normal American. He points out that “what feels normal to each of us is based on our context,” and he further illuminates that if you had five best friends, “The odds of them all being college graduates if you took a random sampling of Americans would be about one-third of 1 percent, or 0.0036.” Through a very strong and illuminating statistic such as this, he showcases to his likely college-educated population that going to college and being surrounded by only those who have gone to college is a very atypical experience in the grand scheme of America. However, this data is likely manipulated in that those who have gone to college, which he states is about a third of Americans, are likely to be surrounded mostly be those who have gone to college — thus, choosing a random American and then giving them five random Americans to be their best friends skews in showing how atypical that experience is.

Another thing that Yang does throughout his book is bring up common rhetoric and rebuttals to the idea that automation is negatively affecting jobs. He responds to this one op-ed that highlights alternatives for those who have had their job displaced by saying that the options highlighted — Etsy and Upwork — largely are unsustainable for those who have those jobs and may not cater to the skills of the displaced workers. He points out that for platforms such as Etsy, it on average “contributes only 13 percent to household income and is intended as a supplement to traditional work” (Yang Chapter 4). This statistic is not specifically rigorous in showcasing how many Etsy sellers do it full-time — or would want to do it full-time but can’t due to its low profits — and the income that generates, and instead it disregards the relatively low statistic of 13% to be indicative of its unsustainability as a career. In this case as well, his point is likely valid, but he intentionally skews his data to more strongly favor his idea.

Additionally, Yang is careful to point out flaws in current statistics or common measures of success. For example, he brings up how the unemployment metric “does not consider people who drop out of the workforce for any reason, including disability or simply giving up trying to find a job” (Yang Chapter 8). In doing so, he can showcase how metrics and statistics, such as his own, can be deceiving. There needs to be more rigorous surveying and compartmentalization when it comes to making statistics more useful.

Week 04 – Lab + Reading Response

  1. The Latinx Resilience Network is a mental health support and educational network for Latinx students at the University of Illinois. It educates students and faculty about mental health awareness and resources, trains students to be peer coordinators and listeners, and fosters Latinx success on campus. This happens through a Latinx Resilience Certificate Workshops or through taking LLS 396: Latinx Mental Health Topics. The network itself officially began in Spring 2014 after more than a year of discussions, and it was created with the support of Veronica M. Kann (Assistant Director of La Casa Cultural Latina) and Alicia P. Rodriguez (Associate Director of the Department of Latina/Latino Studies), along with support from a Strategic Initiative Grant from Student Affairs.
  2. In order to get institutional support, the program founders had to prove that there was a pressing need for Latinx students specifically to receive and give mental health support through a program such as this and that students would likely support it if it were to exist. It rose through the identification, likely through interviews and surveys, that many Latinx students face additional challenges and stress before and when going to college through the increased pressure of more responsibilities, such as translation and paying the bills, or of coming from cultures that stigmatized mental health and underserved schools that could not support them. Through historical documents, it can be seen that UIUC remains a predominantly white institution, and many URM feel pressure that they were only accepted out of “affirmative action,” while remaining perfectly capable as is. 
  3. Research: 
    1. Archives: Document that shows that Latinx historically have tended to come from underserved schools that did not have the resources to teach them how to identify such challenges and that their cultures tend to stigmatize it. Document that shows the relationship between mental health resources and the affluence of a school. 
    2. Interviews: Talk to Latinx students about mental health and its position or disregard in Latinx culture. Talk about the struggles and familial pressures they had growing up and in culture and how they tried to address them.
      1. What is your experience with mental health challenges?
      2. How do your family and culture view mental health?
      3. Who do you go to for help?
    3. Survey Design:
      1. What percentage of students at the University of Illinois identify as Latinx?
        1. 2.4%
        2. 4.5%
        3. 6.3%
        4. 8.1%
        5. 9.3%
        6. 11.5%
        7. 13.2%
      2. Do you receive mental health services from a campus resource?
        1. Yes, I receive help from The Counseling Center.
        2. Yes, I receive help from McKinley Health Center.
        3. Yes, I receive help from DRES.
        4. Yes, I receive help from some combination of the above.
        5. No, I used to receive help from one of those resources, but I no longer continue to do so.
        6. No, I receive off-campus help.
        7. No, I do not receive mental health services.
      3. Do you think the University of Illinois should support a mental health support and educational network for Latinx students at the University of Illinois?
        1. Strongly disagree
        2. Partially disagree
        3. Slightly disagree
        4. Neutral
        5. Slightly favor
        6. Partially favor
        7. Strongly favor
  4. This program has likely faced challenges in funding, because naturally many mental health resources and programs for minority students lack funding. They would also have to prove that this program warrants a unique enough cause and situation so that it would not be a part of a broader university effort rather than be Latinx focused. It does not indicate anyone being opposed to it, but definitely student and faculty support and awareness throughout the years is necessary so that it remains warranted and funded. It also tip-toes around other on-campus mental health resources, so faculty and students had to prove that those were not enough to address mental health among Latinx students.
  5. The other needs that are unaddressed is that the program innately puts a lot of pressure onto Latinx students to seek out and become the peer mental health facilitators and listeners for their friends. This may be favorable, because a lot of times, people choose to turn to their friends at odd hours of the day or simply trust their friends more. However, this largely ignores the fact that the University generally does not support any of their students enough, Latinx or not, through current mental health resources, and the program seems to be the impetus on students to be the change when a lot of times, their peers even through certificate workshops and taking a class may not know enough as a trained and devoted mental health professional. Especially on Latinx students, the program may be used as justification that Latinx students are receiving enough help when it also puts the burden on students to take their workshops and classes even if they may not have time to do so. In general, providing grander mental health resources and support for all of campus through trained and full-time professionals would probably do the most help, though that takes a lot of funding that the University is not ready to address.

Reading Response

Throughout the 1960s and especially in its latter half, there were a series of social movements occurring throughout the United States and world. At UIUC itself, a lot of student activism support was present in The Daily Illini publications, as it sought to popularize and normalize such movements. The formation of key clubs such as the Dubois Club, Students for a Democratic Society, and the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee all trumpeted and pressed for reform and change. As well, the campus president at the time, while initially dismissive, would meet with the faculty senate in order to finally recognize the DuBois Club (Metz 78). Internationally, men and women independently tried to overcome the barrier of societal’s norms for gender expression as it relates to power. While many men challenged patriarchal power, women challenged the patriarchy and gender hierarchy itself (Evans 338). Politically, many Americans were scared of the threat of communism and socialism, which is why they were ardently opposed to the W.E.B. DuBois Club as its namesake was well-known as a Stalinist communist (Metz 39). Finally, barriers concerning free speech at UIUC, especially as it related to the Clabaugh Act which prevented UIUC officials rom extending university facilities to organizations deemed subversive or un-American, proved to be major contesting points for students.

  1. How do you feel the University of Illinois compares to other campuses in terms of student activism in the 1960s and also now?
  2. By learning more about the history of a time you lived through, how does that change or validate how you felt during those events?
  3. To what extent do you think these movements were intersectional and inclusive of various backgrounds and identities?
  4. Do you think the student movements were successful at UIUC? How do you think they could have been more successful?
  5. What do you think was the most successful or influential student group at UIUC and why?