What to Know
- SUNY Binghamton began offering a course for RAs titled "StopWhitePeople2K16"
- The course description was posted online by a conservative student publication and earned the ire of social media users.
- In a letter posted to the university's website on Wednesday, administrators said that the course didn't violate rules.
SUNY Binghamton is catching flak for offering a "StopWhitePeople2K16" seminar for its residential assistants.
Hundreds of Twitter and Facebook users began blasting the state university after the Binghamton Review, a conservative student publication at the university, posted the description for the training course titled "#StopWhitePeople2K16."
The course description states that "the premise of this session is to help others take the next steps in understanding diversity, privilege, and the society we function in."
In a letter posted to the university's website on Wednesday, Vice President of Student Affairs Brian Rose said that the course description was borrowed from a Twitter hashtag that is often used ironically.
He added that he had "no indication that this particular program was inconsistent with the respectful environment we hope to support and sustain."
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A university spokesman said that the curriculum for the one-time course was developed for students by students. The spokesman said that while many at the university felt the name of the session was chosen poorly, the actual course was not "anti-white" and "represented a respectful open dialogue among participants."
Still, the title of the course quickly began circulating on social media and was picked up by several conservative news outlets. Social media users across the country, meanwhile, accused the university of racism.
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Some posting to the university's Facebook page to call out the course.
"Apparently "Don't Be White at This School" should be your #1 hack. This school is an F'in joke," wrote one Facebook user.
And on Twitter, hundreds of people from across the country used the course's description as a hashtag as they lambasted the course.