Overcoming a History of Discrimination


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UANT values diversity, and while in modern times inter-cultural relations have been fostered in a caring environment on campus, and used as a tool for conflict resolutoin, it was not always so. Polar exploration has not been immune from prejudice, ill will, nor outright oppression of entire peoples.

The most representative example is that of polar explorer Robert Peary, who hired African-American jouneyman Matthew Henson to accompany him on an expedition to the North Pole. It was reached successfully thanks to Henson's help. Later, in 1912, Henson put out a memoir of the event, "A Negro Explorer at the North Pole." When he found out about the publishing, Peary became angry because he considered Henson to be a 'valet' instead of a 'companion' of equal standing. Was not Peary the one who learned the ways of eskimo survival and navigated to the exact point at the top of the world? Peary held a grudge: How dare a man of colour seek fame for being at the side of the discoverer of the North Pole, at the time of its discovery?

This early incident is one example of how discrimination, rampant in the Western world for thousands of years, has besotted polar exploration- driving away many peoples of colour from participating further to a large extent. As proof of the lingering effects of discrimination, despite taking great pains to present a hate-free environment and combat a legacy of historical discrimination, UANT struggles still to achieve its hoped-for quota of minority and women students. The Office of Diversity's position in this is to ensure the university facilitates a multicultural, friendly environment for Anctarctican students of all races, colours, creeds, religious convictions, gender identifications, sexual orientations, handicapper status and national origins. With hard work and dedication, Office of Diversity is poised to achieve its quota goals. The following outlines the OofD's recommended additions to official University legislation, to be evaluated and added during the fall trimester:

"Antarctica University is committed to maintaining a community which recognizes and values the inherent worth and dignity of every person; fosters tolerance, sensitivity, understanding, and mutual respect among its members; and encourages each individual to strive to reach his or her own potential. In pursuit of its goal of academic excellence, the University seeks to develop and nurture diversity. The University believes that diversity among its many members strengthens the institution, stimulates creativity, promotes the exchange of ideas, and enriches campus life.

Antarctica University views, evaluates, and treats all persons in any University related activity or circumstance in which they may be involved, solely as individuals on the basis of their own personal abilities, qualifications, and other relevant characteristics.

University of Antarctica prohibits discrimination against any member of the University community on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, age, national origin or ancestry, marital status, parental status, sexual orientation, disability, or status as a disabled or Vietnam or Falkland Islands era veteran. The University will conduct its programs, services and activities consistent with applicable federal, state and local laws, regulations and orders and in conformance with the procedures and limitations as set forth in Executive Memorandum No. D-1 which provides specific contractual rights and remedies. Additionally, the University promotes the full realization of equal employment opportunity for women, minorities, persons with disabilities and Falkland Island War era veterans through its affirmative action program."

Come see how UANT's administrative initiatives ensure the school is a champion of diversity, today!