Defining diversity and how to approach the concept both on campus and in the future lives of students is a primary focus in Winthrop University’s curriculum. It is the topic of most discussions and pieces assigned in their critical core classes, but how has it been defined amongst Winthrop students?
Allison Snipes, a junior Teaching Fellow, defines how she perceives diversity at Winthrop as a combination of “conflicting political viewpoints, ethnicities, nationalities, religious views, and other beliefs…[that] can be expressed here while being respected,” and that’s something she enjoys about attending this campus specifically.
Hagan Letta, a music education student, defines diversity not by the differences themselves but the interactions between those who differ from each other and the environment that creates. “To me, true diversity is an environment which accepts opinions outside of the norm and encourages free thought as well as self expression,” Letta stated.
Both of these definitions describe diversity as something that extends beyond differing perspectives. Diversity is an embodiment of those perspectives coming together.
Noah Behrick, a sophomore psychology student, explores the definition in an even broader sense. “Diversity is a culmination of different perspectives, and that collective variety is a necessity for growth and multilateral success. Diversity means progress,” Behrick explained.
Putting these definitions together, diversity can be defined as progression resulting from environments that embody the acceptance and coming together of differing perspectives. Everyone is different, and in that, everyone is also the same. Therefore, it is that common ground that brings everyone together and allows them to grow.