Title VI Resources for Students

The College is committed to maintaining a safe and healthy educational and employment environment that is free from discrimination, harassment and misconduct on the basis of race. The College has an affirmative duty to take immediate and appropriate action once it knows or its management should know of an act of race-based discrimination in any of its educational or employment programs or activities. The College will promptly and thoroughly investigate any complaints of race-based discrimination in accordance with the procedures set forth in its Policy on Nondiscrimination Procedures documents.

Race Discrimination Education and Resources

Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on race, color or national origin in programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance. All federal agencies that provide grants of assistance are required to enforce Title VI. The U.S. Department of Education gives grants of financial assistance to schools and colleges and to certain other entities, including vocational rehabilitation programs.

Discrimination is the act of making unjustified distinctions between human beings based on the groups, classes or other categories to which they are perceived to belong. People may be discriminated against on the basis of race, gender, age, religion or sexual orientation, as well as other categories. Discrimination especially occurs when individuals or groups are unfairly treated in a way that is worse than other people are treated, on the basis of their actual or perceived membership in certain groups or social categories. It involves restricting members of one group from opportunities or privileges that are available to members of another group. Discrimination can occur when the victim and the person who inflicted the discrimination are of the same race or color.

Race discrimination involves treating someone (an applicant or employee) unfavorably because he/she is of a certain race or because of personal characteristics associated with race (such as hair texture, skin color or certain facial features). Color discrimination involves treating someone unfavorably because of skin color complexion. Race/color discrimination also can involve treating someone unfavorably because the person is married to (or associated with) a person of a certain race or color.

Examples of discrimination covered by Title VI include racial harassment, school segregation and denial of language services to English learners. Harassment can also include, for example, racial slurs, offensive or derogatory remarks about a person's race or color, or the display of racially offensive symbols. Although the law doesn't prohibit simple teasing, offhand comments, or isolated incidents that are not very serious, harassment is illegal when it is so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work/school environment. A fuller list of Title VI issues the Office for Civil Rights addresses appears here. The U.S. Department of Education Title VI regulation (Code of Federal Regulations at 34 CFR 100) is enforced by the Department's Office for Civil Rights.

Understanding the Historical Foundations of Race

Learn from the National Museum of African American History and Culture's exploration into the historical foundations of Racewhere it began, how it began and how it infiltrates the American way of life. To understand race as it exists today, we must understand its history. 

Discover Historical Foundations of Race

Wealth Gap

1. The median wealth of white households in the United States was $171,000. That’s 10 times the wealth of Black households ($17,100) and eight times that of Hispanic households ($20,600). (Pew Research Center, 2016)

Food Insecurity

2. Food insecurity rates for both non-Hispanic Black and Hispanic households were at least twice that of non-Hispanic white households in the U.S. (USDA, 2016)

3. In 2017, 21.8 percent of Black households and 18 percent of Latinx households reported food insecurity, while the national food insecurity rate was just 11.8 percent. (Hunger and Health: Feeding America, 2017)


4. American job candidates were more likely to get an interview when they “whitened” their name. 25 percent of Black candidates received callbacks from their whitened resumes, while only 10 percent got calls when they left ethnic details on their application. (Harvard study 2016)

5. 21 percent of Asian Americans received callbacks if they used whitened resumes, compared with 11.5 percent who sent CVs inferring race. (Harvard study 2016)

6. In Australia, the callback rate for CVs with Anglo-Saxon-sounding names was 35 percent compared with the following minority groups: Indigenous applicants 26 percent; Middle Eastern 22 percent and Chinese 21 percent. (HILDA Project, 2011)


7. American unemployment skyrocketed for Black and white workers in the COVID-19 labor market but the unemployment rate is higher for Black workers; 16.7 percent compared to the white unemployment rate of 14.2 percent. (Economic Policy Institute, 2020)

8. Black workers in the U.S. are more likely to hold front-line ‘essential’ jobs —forcing them to risk their own and their families’ health to earn a wage. They make up one in six of all front-line-industry workers and are disproportionately represented in the following industries: grocery, convenience stores, public transit, postal service, child care and social services. (Economic Policy Institute, 2020)

9. Australian Indigenous doctors reported bullying as a source of major stress at 5.5 times and racism at nearly 10 times the rate of their non-Indigenous counterparts. (Beyond Blue, 2017)

Environmental Pollution

10. Water contamination affects low-income areas and communities of color across the United States disproportionately, leading to health-related issues. The groups most impacted by water pollution are children of color residing in rural areas, indigenous communities, and migrant farmworker communities. (American Progress, 2016).

11. Communities of color in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic breathe in 66 percent more air pollution from vehicles on average than white residents. (Union of Concerned Scientists, 2019)


12. The average concentrations of air pollution exposure for minority communities compared with white residents are as follows: Latino residents 75 percent higher; Asian American residents 73 percent higher, and Black residents are 61 percent higher. (Union of Concerned Scientists, 2019)

13. Black people are exposed to about 1.5 times more polluters and pollution particulate matter than white people, and Hispanics had about 1.2 times the exposure compared with non-Hispanic whites. Environmental Health Perspectives, 2012 (PDF) (404 KB)


14. In 2017, only 16.6 percent of American journalists at daily newspapers were people of color even though 37 percent of its population is non-white. (ASNE Diversity Survey, 2017)

15. There is a lack of cultural and linguistic diversity (CALD) in Australian media, with 82.7 percent of the national entertainment and media workforce speaking only English at home. (PWC Australian Entertainment & Media Outlook, 2018)


16. In Australia, just 4.1 percent of parliamentarians have a non-European background, and only 1.5 percent have an Indigenous background, even though non-Europeans and the Indigenous make up roughly 24 percent of the country’s population. (Australian Human Rights Commission Leading for Change report, 2018)

17. Just 22 percent of the United States Congress are from racial or ethnic minorities even though non-whites make up 39 percent of the nation’s population. (Pew Research Center, 2019)


18. Indigenous people make up just two percent of the Australian population, but 28 percent of the adult prison population. (ABS, 2019)

19. Black Americans are incarcerated in state prisons at a rate that is five times that of whites. (Sentencing Project, 2016)


20. In Australia, less than 10 percent of artistic directors come from culturally diverse backgrounds even though this group makes up 24% of the country’s population. (The Conversation, 2019)

Definitions for Understanding and Preventing Race-Based Nondiscrimination

This refers to systemic racism and oppression specifically against Black people, which includes the devaluation of Black lives, casual violence against Black people, and the unwillingness to acknowledge their humanity. Anti-Blackness is in part overt racism against Black people; this is the type of racism that is blatantly visible, whether through slurs, hate crimes, police brutality, or other targeted attacks. The second part is covert or unspoken systemic racism, which plays a major role in Black people’s socioeconomic status in the United States.

The commitment to identifying and fighting racism in any form, including in yourself and your own life. It is an active stance, as opposed to simply “not being racist.” According to Ibram X. Kendi, the author of How To Be Antiracist, being non-racist implies neutrality, and neutrality in the face of racism simply upholds existing racist systems.

An acronym for Black, Indigenous, People of Color. Activists have started using the term BIPOC more frequently than “people of color” to highlight the disproportionate forms of oppression faced by Black and Indigenous people, while still building solidarity among all people of color. However, this term should not be used when speaking to or about a specific group of people — if the issues you're discussing specifically affect, say, Black people, make sure you say that, rather than use an umbrella term like "BIPOC" or "people of color."

A movement and network launched in 2013 by three Black organizers: Patrisse Cullors, Alicia Garza and Opal Tometi. Seven years later, Black Lives Matter is both a rallying cry and an activist network demanding justice and humanity for Black people—not only in light of police killings, but also in fields ranging from education and housing to electoral politics and health care. The phrase “Black Lives Matter” refers to the fact that Black lives should matter, but that existing systems and institutions do not currently treat them as though they do.

An economic and political system in which private, for-profit companies have control over a country’s trade and industry, rather than workers or the government. For decades, anti-racist activists and scholars have argued that capitalism and racism are closely intertwined, while some activists have denounced capitalist structures’ tendency to value economic resources or productivity over people.

Colonization can be defined as some form of invasion, dispossession and subjugation of a people. The invasion need not be military; it can begin—or continue—as geographical intrusion in the form of agricultural, urban or industrial encroachments. The result of such incursion is the dispossession of vast amounts of lands from the original inhabitants. This is often legalized after the fact. The long-term result of such massive dispossession is institutionalized inequality. The colonizer/colonized relationship is by nature an unequal one that benefits the colonizer at the expense of the colonized. Ongoing and legacy Colonialism impact power relations in most of the world today. For example, white supremacy as a philosophy was developed largely to justify European colonial exploitation of the Global South (including enslaving African peoples, extracting resources from much of Asia and Latin America, and enshrining cultural norms of whiteness as desirable both in colonizing and colonizer nations).

An individual who is alleged to be the victim of conduct that could constitute race-based discrimination.

A person who is employed or contracted by the College to provide emergency and ongoing support to students and employees who experience race-based discrimination. Confidential Advisors may include persons employed by a community-based sexual assault crisis center with whom the College partners.

The act of taking fashion, music, style, or other trends from another culture. More specifically, cultural appropriation refers to when someone from a dominant culture takes elements from the culture of a group that has historically been oppressed or marginalized and uses them for the dominant group’s benefit. (This is what distinguishes cultural appropriation from acts of cultural exchange.)

A location, event or circumstance over which the College exercised substantial control over both the respondent and the context in which the race-based misconduct occurs, and also includes any building owned or controlled by a student organization that is officially recognized by the College.

This refers to a worldview that centers Europe and European perspectives and positions European narratives and history over that of other cultures and regions. In the United States, many textbooks, classroom activities, and essays treat European versions of history and culture as the standard. As the Center for InterAmerican Studies at Germany’s Bielefeld University pointed out, a Eurocentric approach to history and geopolitics often disregards the colonial violence inflicted by Europe on much of the world and implies European perspectives are dominant or reliable narrators.

An act or an attempted act that violates a criminal statute by any person that in any way constitutes an expression of hostility toward the victim because of his or her sex, race, ethnicity, religion, age, disability, national origin, sexual orientation, or gender-related identity, color, marital status, military status or unfavorable military discharge.

A race-based discriminatory hostile environment is created when conduct by an individual is so severe, pervasive or persistent that it denies or limits an individual’s ability to participate in or receive the benefits, services or opportunities of the College’s educational programs or activities or the individual’s employment access, benefits or opportunities. In determining whether a hostile environment has been created, the conduct in question will be considered from both a subjective and an objective perspective of a reasonable person in the alleged victim’s position, considering all the circumstances.

Defined as the pattern of social and political systems discriminating against a group of people based on race. It is when someone is treated unfairly because of their race that has become part of the normal behavior of people within an organization. Institutional racism looks at the big picture of how racism is enshrined in systems at every level of society and affects people of color in all aspects of their lives. You may also hear the related terms “structural racism” and “systemic racism” to describe how the social structures and systems in place today were designed to benefit people in positions of power — namely, straight cisgender white men. Institutional racism has manifested in things like voter suppression, the disproportionate incarceration of Black and Latinx people, and the War on Drugs. It is a form of racism expressed in the practice of social and political institutions. It is reflected in disparities regarding wealth, income, criminal justice, employment, housing, health care, political power and education, among other factors.

Internalized racism describes what happens when people of color accept or normalize the racism in the society around them, often due to the racism and stigma they have experienced. People who internalize racism may not know they are doing it, but doing so may cause them to hold negative beliefs about their own identity, race and community. While the experience of internalized racism will differ depending on a person's individual community, on a systemic level, internalized racism is often the product of systems that reward people of color for upholding or colluding with systems of whiteness, power and privilege. People of color can’t force white people to confront their own racism and privilege, but they can work on their own internalized racism.

The act of intentionally making another timid or fearful, or compelling or deterring by or as if by threats. Intimidation is a form of retaliation prohibited by the College’s Policy Prohibiting Race-Based Discrimination and Misconduct in these Procedures.

Subtly discriminatory incidents, statements, or other experiences. Examples of racist microaggressions can include being asked to explain your origins, being compared to other people of your race, or assumptions about your intentions based on your race and appearance. Unlike explicit racial slurs or racist attacks, microaggressions manifest in more insidious ways and can have a lifelong negative impact on physical and mental health, particularly when they happen frequently and the effects are compounded. The term “microaggression” was originally coined by Dr. Chester Pierce in 1970 and subsequently used by Columbia professor Derald Sue.

When considering all the evidence in the case, the decision-maker is persuaded that the allegations are more probably true than not true.

For many people, it comes as a surprise that racial categorization schemes were invented by scientists to support worldviews that viewed some groups of people as superior and some as inferior. There are three important concepts linked to this fact:

  1. Race is a made-up social construct, and not an actual biological fact.
  2. Race designations have changed over time. Some groups that are considered “white” in the United States today were considered “non-white” in previous eras, in U.S. Census data and in mass media and popular culture (for example, Irish, Italian and Jewish people).
  3. The way in which racial categorizations are enforced (the shape of racism) has also changed over time. For example, the racial designation of Asian American and Pacific Islander changed four times in the 19th century. That is, they were defined at times as white and at other times as not white. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, as designated groups, have been used by whites at different times in history to compete with African American labor.

Racism is different from racial prejudice, hatred or discrimination. Racism involves one group having the power to carry out systematic discrimination through the institutional policies and practices of the society and by shaping the cultural beliefs and values that support those racist policies and practices. The definition of racism can be summed up in four ways:

  1. Race prejudice + social and institutional power equals racism.
  2. A system of advantage based on race.
  3. A system of oppression based on race.
  4. A white supremacy system.

In 1983, a university professor named Cedric J. Robinson coined the term “racial capitalism” primarily to describe the process by which white people and institutions derive social and economic value from people of color. As critical race theorist Cheryl Harris wrote, the fact that the United States was built on the “hyper-exploitation of Black labor” and the “conquest, removal, and extermination of Native American life and culture” was a key example of how capitalism was weaponized against Black and Indigenous people.

Redlining is an extension of the historical housing discrimination practice of redlining to include an ability to discriminate against vulnerable classes of society using algorithms or political campaign managers who identify which communities to actively discourage from voting through voter suppression campaigns. In the United States, redlining is also defined as the systematic denial of various services by federal government agencies, local governments as well as the private sector either directly or through the selective raising of prices. Neighborhoods with a high proportion of minority residents are more likely to be redlined than other neighborhoods with similar household incomes, housing age and type, and other determinants of risk, but different racial composition. While the best-known examples of redlining have involved the denial of financial services such as banking or insurance, other services such as health care or even supermarkets have been denied to residents. In the case of retail businesses like supermarkets, purposely locating stores impractically far away from targeted residents results in a redlining effect.

An individual who has been reported to be the perpetrator of conduct that could constitute race-based discrimination or misconduct.

Restorative Justice is an approach to justice in which one of the responses to a crime is to organize a meeting between the victim and the offender, sometimes with representatives of the wider community. The goal is for them to share their experience of what happened, to discuss who was harmed by the crime and how, and to create a consensus for what the offender can do to repair the harm from the offense. This may include a payment of money given from the offender to the victim, apologies and other amends, and other actions to compensate those affected and to prevent the offender from causing future harm.

Any form of retaliation, including intimidation, threats, harassment and other adverse action taken or threatened against any complainant or person reporting or filing a complaint alleging racial discrimination or misconduct or any person cooperating in the investigation of such allegations (including testifying, assisting or participating in any manner in an investigation) is strictly prohibited and may violate the protections of the State Employees and Officials Ethics Act, the Whistleblower Act, and the Illinois Human Rights Act. Action is generally deemed adverse if it would deter a reasonable person in the same circumstances from opposing practices prohibited by the College’s Race-Based Nondiscrimination Policy and these Procedures. Retaliation may result in disciplinary or other action independent of the sanctions or supportive measures imposed in response to the allegations of race-based discrimination or misconduct.

Reverse Redlining occurs when a lender or insurer particularly targets minority consumers in a non-redlined area, not to deny them loans or insurance, but to charge them more than would be charged to a similarly situated white consumer.

Structural Racism in the United States is the normalization and legitimization of an array of dynamics–historical, cultural, institutional and interpersonal–that routinely advantage whites while producing cumulative and chronic adverse outcomes for people of color.

Voter Suppression is a strategy used to influence the outcome of an election by discouraging or preventing specific groups of people from voting. It is distinguished from political campaigning in that campaigning attempts to change likely voting behavior by changing the opinions of potential voters through persuasion and organization, activating otherwise inactive voters, or registering new supporters. Voter suppression, instead, attempts to reduce the number of voters who might vote against a candidate or proposition. The tactics of voter suppression range from minor changes to make voting less convenient, to physically intimidating and even physically attacking prospective voters, which is illegal. Voter suppression can be effective if a significant number of voters are intimidated or disenfranchised.[1] In 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Shelby v. Holder that voting laws had resulted in voter suppression and discrimination. Voter suppression is a practice by politicians as an assault on civil rights and a threat to a legitimate representational democracy. People and politicians who can change these laws simply have not to date, making this threat to true democracy normal practice to employ and normal to deny the right to vote for many Black and Indigenous, and other people of color.

White Fragility describes the feelings of discomfort and defensiveness a white person may feel when confronted with the realities of racism and inequality. Robin DiAngelo coined the term “white fragility” in 2011 to describe the disbelief that many white people feel when asked to challenge their own ideas about race and racism. According to DiAngelo, white people often live their lives in segregation without having meaningful relationships with BIPOC—and without realizing they are inherently complicit in systems of racism and white supremacy. DiAngelo further elaborates on this concept in her 2018 book White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism, though some have critiqued the book for failing to center contemporary Black scholars in its exploration of whiteness. Again, white fragility is the anger on the part of a white person when confronted by information about racial inequality and injustice. As a culture, we are taught from a young age not to see color, that slavery ended 150+ years ago, and that America has equal opportunity for all people. This story is simply not true. It is a white-washed version of the truth.

Whiteness refers to the specific dimensions of racism that serve to elevate white people over people of color. This definition counters the dominant representation of racism in mainstream education as isolated in discrete behaviors that some individuals may or may not demonstrate, and goes beyond naming specific privileges (McIntosh, 1988). Whites are theorized as actively shaped, affected, defined and elevated through their racialization and the individual and collective consciousness formed within it (Whiteness is thus conceptualized as a constellation of processes and practices rather than as a discrete entity (i.e. skin color alone).

White (People) in the context of race is a term referring to white people, was created by Virginia slave owners and colonial rules in the 17th century. It replaced terms like Christian and Englishman to distinguish European colonists from Africans and indigenous peoples. European colonial powers established whiteness as a legal concept after Bacon’s Rebellion in 1676, during which indentured servants of European and African descent had united against the colonial elite. The legal distinction of white separated the servant class on the basis of skin color and continental origin. The creation of ‘whiteness’ meant giving privileges to some while denying them to others with the justification of biological and social inferiority

The way in which institutions and systems give white people an advantage due to the color of their skin. The term “white privilege” does not signify that white people do not experience poverty or other hardships. Instead, it indicates that any systemic difficulties a white person encounters will not be the result of their skin color.

The concept and social practice of treating whiteness as preferential or superior. However, the term goes beyond individual beliefs that white people are superior, and includes systems of oppression and exploitation based in this assumption. White supremacy includes the historical enslavement and genocide of BIPOC, as well as more modern manifestations like redlining, voter suppression, and patterns of thinking that devalue non-white people. In a 2017 document for the Catalyst Project — an anti-racist center for political education in the San Francisco Bay Area — Elizabeth “Betita” Martinez, an American Chicana feminist organizer and educator, wrote that it is important to talk about white supremacy in the context of a system, rather than simply of “personal prejudices and individual acts of discrimination.”

White Supremacy Culture refers to the dominant, unquestioned standards of behavior and ways of functioning embodied by the vast majority of institutions in the United States. These standards may be seen as mainstream, dominant cultural practices; they have evolved from the United States’ history of white supremacy. Because it is so normalized, it can be hard to see, which only adds to its powerful hold. In many ways, it is indistinguishable from what we might call U.S. culture or norms–a focus on individuals over groups, for example, or an emphasis on the written word as a form of professional communication. But it operates in even more subtle ways, by actually defining what “normal” is–and likewise, what “professional,” “effective,” or even “good” is. In turn, white culture also defines what is not good, “at-risk,” or “unsustainable.” White culture values some ways – ways that are more familiar and come more naturally to those from a white, western tradition – of thinking, behaving, deciding, and knowing while devaluing or rendering invisible other ways. And it does this without ever having to explicitly say so. White supremacy culture is also an artificial, historically constructed culture which expresses, justifies and binds together the United States' white supremacy system. It is the glue that binds together white-controlled institutions into systems and white-controlled systems into the global white supremacy system.