The institution also ignores song-and-dance diversity proposal.
The University of Maine is proving to be an example of the unreasonable goals set forth by quota-based campus diversity programs.
Jesse Scardina of The Maine Campus reports on complaints that the university is receiving on its hiring system; such complaints fail to consider that realities of the state’s population.
In a state where over 95 percent of its population is white, the University of Maine is an outlier.
With over 1,000 students representing 45 states and territories as well as 67 foreign countries, some feel that more should be done to reach out to minorities for faculty and administration positions.
“[I asked,] ‘Why is it all you old, white guys at the top?’” said David Slagger, a state representative for the Houlton Band of Maliseet Indians and a graduate student at UMaine. “Of the whole campus, the thousands of employees, there’s four Native Americans working here. Where’s the outreach to us?”
According to the Office of Equal Opportunity, one of the 46 administrative positions is held by a minority. That one hire occurred between Aug. 8, 2011 and July 17, 2012. Of the 2,309 positions, from custodian to president, 5.8 percent self-identified as minorities and 4.5 percent chose not to self-identify.
That deficiency is one the UMaine Office of Equal Opportunity is combatting, according to Associate Director Bonita Grindle and Director Karen Kemble.
They said the office tries to make sure any job openings, whether faculty or administration level, are compliant with equal opportunity federal regulations and that the description is as specific as possible, to target the correct audiences.
“We try to be discipline-specific when hiring faculty positions because there are a lot of discipline-specific organizations, and those organizations often have mail lists people can participate in,” Kemble said, citing the American Psychological Association as an example of an organization that maintains special lists for women and minorities.
In addition to complaining about the University of Maine’s lack of adherence to a quota-based (instead of merrit-based) hiring system, Slagger continues the critique because the administration failed to enact a “feel good” proposal he made:
As a proposal for Ferguson’s Blue Sky Project — a campuswide strategic plan that called for faculty and student input — Slagger suggested a Blue Sky Lodge, pushing it as “a place for gathering, sharing stories, making connections across cultures, gaining support, socializing in a safe and welcome manner [and one that] has roots that go far back in the cultural traditions of this region.”
These complaints about University of Maine’s focus on serious scholarship and finding quality instruction should be selling points in an increasingly competitive higher education market.