Loyola appoints racial justice task force

Loyola University Maryland is responding to student concerns about racial insensitivity by establishing a task force to make recommendations about campuswide racial justice training.

The 14-person panel, created by the Rev. Brian F. Linnane, the university’s president, is comprised of students, faculty members and administrators and is examining best practices for racial justice training on college campuses across the country, according to the university.

Loyola administrators made this training a priority after meeting late last year with students who had observed or experienced harmful remarks made toward students of color.

Based on the eventual recommendations of the task force, the university wants to begin training in the fall of 2016.

“As a Jesuit, Catholic university, we must be particularly passionate about getting to the heart of the issue of racial justice and creating an open, welcoming environment for all students and employees. We have no room for racism or intolerance here,” Linnane said in a statement. “Through training, and through the many current and future opportunities I know will be offered on campus for further conversation on racial justice, I am confident we will emerge as a more welcoming, more inclusive community.”

Loyola recently adjusted the priorities for its ongoing, $100 million fundraising campaign to include its Center for Community Service & Justice program, which provides opportunities for community service in Baltimore and other areas, and to increase the fundraising goal for the university’s York Road Initiative, a community partnership that works to improve the quality of life for the nearby Govans community.