I’m so Interested

The Daily D reports this morning that Dean of the Tucker Foundation and Interim Vice President for Diversity Stuart Lord is trying to revive the Diversity Council. The members of the Council include, among others, “the provost, the dean of the faculty, the dean of admissions, the dean of the College and Tuck School of Business and Dartmouth Medical School deans.” The central means of revival seem to be the implementation of Campus Climate lunches. These lunches, you will remember, were the subject of an oh-so-polite blitz sent out by Lord about a week and a half ago.

In the wake of his tactful blitz, Dean Lord is now putting a positive spin on what his Campus Climate lunches have accomplished. In his original campus-wide blitz, Lord sarcastically praised the campus for showing such care and awareness for diversity issues. That blitz led directly to this apology later that same day:

>Date: 14 May 2007 23:41:14 -0400
>From: Stuart C. Lord
>Subject: Regarding Mission Accomplished
>To: (Recipient list suppressed)

The goal of the e-mail I sent earlier was to generate publicity and increase attendance at our campus climate luncheons. In addition, The Office of the Vice-President for Institutional Diversity values the hard work that many members of this community have devoted to raising awareness about issues of diversity. The purpose of the Campus Climate Lunches is to provide a forum for both Dartmouth students and faculty/staff members to share ideas, strategies and suggestions for the improvement of the campus climate. [. . .]


What led to this lashing out and the following apology? Only 20 students showed up for the first Campus Climate lunch. So, two lunches later, how are we faring in our campus consciousness? Well, about the same—the total attendance for all three lunches was 60 students, in other words about 20 students per lunch. What does Lord have to say about the final state of attendance at these meetings?

“People not being here is not an indication that they aren’t interested,” Lord said. “I am from the perspective that everyone is interested.”