Ian Patrick, FISM News
As the school year is wrapping up for universities nationwide, Columbia University made headlines for their planned graduation celebrations. As a part of the Commencement Week, Columbia is offering six additional celebrations based on race, sexual preference, and income.
Reports of the separate ceremonies spread through conservative outlets such as The Daily Wire and The Washington Examiner, which prompted a reply from Columbia via Twitter. According to the university, these separate celebrations are not meant to replace the school-wide graduation.
Reports today and previous tweets misrepresent our multicultural graduation celebrations, which exist in addition to, not instead of, University-wide commencement and individual school Class Days. 1/
— Columbia University (@Columbia) March 16, 2021
The university also affirms that these celebrations are voluntary, but are “a highly anticipated and valuable part of the Columbia graduation experience.”
Ceremonies offered by the University include a Native Celebration, an Asian Celebration, a Black Celebration, a Latino Celebration, a Lavender Celebration (for those part of the LGBTQ+ community), and a FLI Celebration which they define as “first generation and/or low income community.” Each celebration falls on different days and times, and are sponsored by different organizations and groups from the school.
In addition to these ceremonies, Columbia is also providing a special graduation cord to those who have been deemed to promote “multiculturalism” in their lives.
Presented by Multicultural Affairs, the Multicultural Graduation Cords are given to graduating seniors in Columbia College, Columbia Engineering and the School of General Studies who have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to diversity, social justice and multiculturalism through Multicultural Affairs, campus leadership, community involvement, academic endeavors and/or personal dedication.
A recent report from the National Association of Scholars revealed that, out of 173 schools, 76 of them promoted similar segregated graduation ceremonies. Among these schools are notable names such as Harvard, Yale, and Stanford.