At a Critical Moment, Students Rewrite Their Statement of Culture
In 2008, Beloit students created their own Statement of Culture, which has been revised by subsequent student groups since its inception. In the midst of a public health crisis and a movement for racial equity, college leadership asked students to revisit the statement last summer.
A committee of 19 student leaders, headed by Beloit Student Government Co-Presidents Saad Ahsan’21 and Pathik Rupwate’21, worked on revisions all summer with Tara Girard, director of Beloit’s Health and Wellness Center, the group’s advisor.
“Faculty and administration don’t experience student life,” Ahsan says, “so it made sense for a student group to lead this [revision].” He says that students on the committee focused on three fundamental themes as they drafted the new statement: the philosophy that “self-care is community care,” making the campus anti-racist, and preserving the “Beloit experience” as fully but as safely as possible.
The revised statement includes an addendum with detailed behavioral expectations for social life on campus and a call for future students to revisit the statement no later than the fall of 2022.
A final draft was ratified by the student body in August before classes began. The entire statement is posted on the Dean of Students pages.
We, the students of Beloit College, expect all members of our community to practice anti-racism by continuing to unlearn internalized racist ideologies, follow institutional guidance to mitigate the risk of COVID-19, and contribute to a safe and vibrant campus life.
—Preamble, Student Statement of Culture