Dealing with Plantation Mentality. WHY?

Written English Transcript in the video:

 

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New Blood On The Table: Next Gallaudet President

phd051404s Today, November 19, 2014—there was a final live-stream about Presidential Search Advisory Committee with three questions: 1) what do you see as the challenges facing the next president? 2) What previous experience would best prepare someone for this role? 3) What do we want to do as a community to help ensure that the next president will be successful in leading Gallaudet University? The current president will be remembered as incumbent president how he handles crisis at GU. For example, budget, lack of accountability: stakeholders, “over-privileged” public figures. I remember meeting him for the first time in Portland, Oregon back in June 2010 at Deaf People of Color Conference. He set his foot in Portland, the home of rich heritage of radical social dissent “radicalism”—big mistake. My home.

He did not really involved much in that conference. I applaud those people who shared their concerns on the stage—but there are few concerns that I would like to share my own opinion. Civil disobedience is an important part to get their attention. The question, how can concerned people convince them that it can be done without a lot of money since GU is “secretly” slashing the budget right and left and student-centered are having difficult time getting their answers from the administration. The current president is becoming richer each day. I am very strong supporter of student-centered philosophy to promote the success of students prior to and at GU. The third question above, the next president should be involved with supporting students academically, students organizations, developing better relationships with students for retention, articulating-facilitating course proposals through curriculum committees (there are hypocrites who are in Senate Faculty), supporting an academic degree program, and participating in faculty and staff meetings.

Promote more breath in teaching by keeping up in professional development and it is part of new blood. The current president does not have professional experiences makes the prospective students realize the paramount importance of supporting academically with diverse difficulties, whether Deaf, minority, learning disabled and other issues has been ignored at times. It is important to have the next president represent the cultural differences and diversity faced by the students at GU that needs to be highly conscious of how it operates by comparing and appreciating their differences.

In my opinion, diversity in higher education enhances economic competitiveness, promotes a healthy society, and strengthens the community of higher learning and teaching. It is also important to expand the educational leadership in reaching out and make a conscious effort to build healthy and diverse learning environments appropriate for GU’s mission. The strength of students’ democracy depends on it. GU is a well-known reference to the attitude of honest acceptance for which student-centered philosophy has been neglected. It is a place where the “high-ranking” administration officials refers to a powerful way to resolve any problem, accomplish any goal, and to achieve any state of mind or body that affects all the Deaf students. Not only with the search for the next president, but there is a large need for the new blood: President’s Cabinet.

Many people had expressed their frustrations about the current President’s Cabinet also known as the administration. It is high time for Paul Kelly; the invisible moneyman on the campus has to go. Dwight Benedict must go as well, too. The President’s Cabinet does not have leadership power for attaining true health, happiness, prosperity, and success at Gallaudet. They have destroyed many Deaf people in the past to benefit not only themselves, but also the biggest moneymakers: Hurwitz and Kelly. GU is for students, their own academy. Since the educational process there is essentially social—particularly in its early stages when it involves at least a president and a student—it is clear that the student, especially if he or she is to cope with college education, must have minimal mastery of the social skills necessary for engaging in future higher learning.

Willard Wilson wrote in 1932: “Schools have a culture that is definitely their own. There are, in school, complex ritual of personal relationships, a set of folkways, mores, and irrational sanctions, a moral code based upon them.” GU is not a world of its own. It is not even a world, but because GU is in the world, because it is affected by situations, and because it orients itself comprehensively in those situations, GU has something—counseling, tutoring, academic advising, and the like—to serve and help students to change and grow socially as well as academically. Kelly manages the financial affairs of GU. It is important to know that business services need to provide for accurate and timely information to both their future population (regarding student accounts) and to GU’s financial matters.

I believe that GU’s new president cabinet and the next president should provide support to auxiliary areas of the university, including, but not limited to, the Board of Trustees, the Budget Committee, and the University Educational Programs. The students, with the first question above, should be all served that receive professional and competent student service and will feel confident that they have done everything possible to address their needs. They will preserve the assets of GU in order to ensure change and growth to happen for future generations. With second question, “what previous experience would best prepare someone for this role?” The current president never became instrumental in shaping students’ wits that permeate the “culture” of GU, for example, Gallaudet’s first name; University is the last name. Whether students are taught with basic sense of self-efficacy, they need to be motivated about higher education.

Also, they have a capacity for producing a desired effect are generally more psychologically prepared than are students who are limited to “sitting at desks studying mostly useless textbooks” Again, the current president and its cabinet never recognize that the diversity of higher learning and teaching styles among students and faculty, and I believe in providing a variety of strategies—evaluations, trainings, workshops, in-services and so forth—for GU to create a “culture” that changes the student and help them grow. Finally, the next president should provide his or her leadership to find ways to utilize the difference in a democratic atmosphere that foster cooperation than the competition and to compliment and collaborate with students. The next president should welcome the opportunity to interview his or her thoughts and ideas as stepwise arguments for students’ contemplation at length, at leisure, and at liberty.

All in all, I believe that the next president candidate for this position, a leader, who inspires, applauds, steers, and stands on the side. Yes, sometimes, they will stand in front, too, to focus on diversity, to encourage university-“ibity” and to help create a setting in which each student can change and everyone can grow. Students can all that they can to ensure that GU is a university-community where higher learning happens for change and higher teaching promotes growth with the next Deaf president. I prefer the next Deaf president should be Black Woman. Radicalism is good for a change! The new blood starts with next president and the entire President’s Cabinet.

Who wants to scuffle cards?

-JT

Copyright © Jason Tozier

This text may be freely copied in its entirely only, including this copyright message.

CC: Board of Trustees: Duane Halliburton, Chair, PSAC, Claire Bugen, Vice Chair, PSAC, Nancy Kelly-Jones, Dick Kinney, Jorge Diaz-Herrera, Tiffany Williams Student Body Government: Andrew Morrill Graduate Student Association: Michael Awbrey Faculty: Teresa Blankmeyer Burke, Dennis Galvan, Christina Yuknis, Kubby Rashid Staff: Glenn Lockhart, representing Clerc Center, Nicholas Gould, Elvis Guillermo Alumni Association: Deborah DeStefano

Radicalism at Gallaudet: Big Questions to Ask

ImagePeter Gourfain’s Hen Eys Tru Ile

First and foremost, I think it is important to know where I was before I came to Gallaudet University. I moved to District of Columbia from Oregon where it is well known for radical students who meet almost every night during weekdays to talk about various social injustices.

I attended many meetings, often to pick up the handouts and took a great course called Revolution and Radical Social Change where I learned Landauer’s For Socialism, Day’s Gramsci is Dead: Anarchist Currents in the Newest Social Movements, and Holloway’s Change the World Without Taking Power: The Meaning of Revolution Today, they were never secretive and, in fact, encouraged by the faculty.

When I first came to Gallaudet University, I soon discovered it to be closed, secretive, and almost obsessed with the status quo. Having lived in the neighborhood of Gallaudet University for almost one year before I was admitted in the graduate school, I had never, ever heard of a group of radical students on campus. Why are they silent or quiet about themselves?  Are they selective–who’s who?  Are they transparent about their fight? To be honest, I do not know. All I was told was that I did not understand the Gallaudet mentality.

Plantation mentality? Are Deaf people who moved upstairs in the administrative hierarchy at Gallaudet University like proverbial pigs in George Orwell’s Animal Farm that become like human beings to oppress other farm animals?

If you are really radical, then ask why you are a closet one?  Have you reached “two roads diverged” where you shall pick a road less traveled to make all the difference? Do you just want me to be a conformist who supplement the status quo, not to rock the ship? Does higher learning generate activism?

Do I really need to shut up so that you are safe? Is that democratic? I have yet to learn about your leadership.

In my younger life, I regret that I did not stand up and later discovered that radicalism has changed the truth in my life. It is amazing how much radicalism has so many hardships that Deaf people has suffered all these years. Time to find the legacy to stop.

All in all, if we are rebellious, we are very much alive. Gallaudet University is where we need to be activistic and rebellious! I am not putting down any of the students, but I simply resist those who choose to cop out on themselves. We are the meaning-makers and we want to make a change. President John F. Kennedy once said: “Change is the law of life.”  Ask then what the nature of Deaf life is? Let Gallaudet University serve the world with this type of knowledge about Deaf people and their language and culture, American Sign Language (ASL)–Change on!

-JT

Copyright © Jason Tozier

This text may be freely copied in its entirely only, including this copyright message.

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