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Myth #2: "Universities aren't Racist anymore"

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Myth #2: "Universities Aren't Racist Anymore"

Reality: There are a number of systemic ways that racism manifests in Higher Education. The Guardian recently reported that 996 formal complaints about racism were made in the past 5 years by staff and students across 131 universities (Batty, 2019: https://www.theguardian.com/world/ng-interactive/2019/jul/05/which-uk-universities-have-received-racism-complaints ). It is highly likely that this is only a fraction of the extent of racism, as many students are reluctant to come forward (Akel, 2019: https://www.gold.ac.uk/media/docs/reports/Insider-Outsider-Report-191008.pdf ). In 2018 alone, there were six high-profile cases of overt racism at UK Universities that were announced by the press. 

In the UK, Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic students are less likely to obtain a 1st or 2:1 compared to white students, with a gap of 13.6%. There is a gap of 24.9% between white people and black people of African origin. Research shows this gap is not due to student differences, but is linked to the white curriculum - the presentation of white, western knowledge as superior. The attainment gap and its link to the white curriculum is an example of institutional racism, where people benefit from institutional structures which disadvantage people of colour. This means that even if there were 0 racists in the system, the University experience would still disproportionately harm people of colour because the system was created racist.

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