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By Amber Randall
The University of Maryland hired a new diversity director last week in light of a white student stabbing a black man and a prank involving a noose and bananas.
The college chose Roger L. Washington, a professor and chair in the Department of Higher Education, as its chief diversity director, reports the Root.
“I have dedicated my life’s work to advancing difficult dialogues and creating a culture of inclusion in higher education,” Washington said in a statement. “The University of Maryland was once a national leader for diversity in higher education. In the face of tremendous tragedy, we can come together as a community to achieve transformational change and return to being a model of equity and social justice.”
The University of Maryland campus was recently rocked with the fatal stabbing of Richard Collins III by white University of Maryland student Sean Christopher Urbanski. Police investigated the stabbing as a hate crime due to Urbanksi’s membership of the Facebook group the “Alt-Reich.” The campus also had a situation in which a fraternity found nooses tied around bananas in their frat house.
Students began complaining that the school wasn’t doing enough to combat these incidents, prompting the college to promote Washington to his new position.
“He is an exceptional scholar-practitioner and leader to guide our university’s efforts to create a more welcoming and inclusive environment for all,” President Wallace D. Loh said in a statement.