Despite the gloomy weather, the organizers of the “Check Your Blind Spots” tour were out on Maple Street from noon to 4 p.m. Monday, Oct. 23 to promote awareness of subconscious, prejudicial biases.
The event was put on by CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion which partnered with the university to bring their tour to campus.
The event consisted of several stations, including a booth that handed out t-shirts, a painting station where artists colored a large banner for the event and a trailer filled with informational videos, quizzes and general tips to raise student awareness.
As students approached the event, they were led into the trailer, where they were shown a brief video informing them of their potential biases. Then they were given a quiz to see how much they really knew about bias in everyday life.
Organizers said biases toward people can be based upon a number of reasons, including race, ethnicity, gender and religion. Videos at the event explained that these biases can lead to snap judgments, and that being aware of prejudice is the best way to combat it.
Last summer, Miami president Gregory Crawford signed CEO Action’s pledge to promote discussions about diversity, inclusion and bias. This made Miami one of only a handful of universities to join in signing the pledge alongside organizations like 21st Century Fox, AT&T and the NBA.
Crawford, who attended the event today, said he wanted to encourage other universities to join the discussion about diversity and inclusion and hoped the event would be the first of many at Miami.
Michelle Thomas, the director of student organizations and diversity for the Farmer School of Business, was present at the event and helped to organize the tour’s stop at Miami.
“It’s our goal to get students to recognize that these biases aren’t intentional but that they’re there all the same,” Thomas said.
Thomas said that she hopes to see events like the Blind Spots tour continue to thrive at Miami.
Graduate student Ryan Bourgart, who participated in the event, said he hadn’t known about “Check Your Blind Spots” before walking by but felt it was an important topic and that deserved to be promoted.
“They’re doing a good job getting their message across,” Bourgart said.
You can find out more at CEOAction.com.