Emory renovates 'Identity Spaces' for 'historically underrepresented groups'

Emory cites the 'racial reckoning in 2020' as the turning point for its plans to undo 'systems, on and off campus, that allow some people to be treated differently from others.'

A 'multi-million-dollar project' is set to create new homes for the Asian Student Center, the Center for Women, Centro Latinx, the Emory Black Student Union and LGBT+ Life.

Emory University in Georgia is aiming to have an “Identity Spaces” project completed by the fall as part of its “Belonging and Community Justice” initiative

The project aligns with the university’s mission to provide greater accommodation toward various minority groups ever since the “racial reckoning in 2020” that exposed the “systems, on and off campus, that allow some people to be treated differently from others.”

Emory University is significantly upgrading our Belonging and Community Justice identity spaces to further enhance support for students’ education, empowerment, sense of purpose and belonging, and wellness – and to create a more just and equitable campus where all students thrive,” the school writes

Emory says that it engaged with students during “40 feedback sessions throughout the planning of this multi-million-dollar project.” 

[RELATED: Berkeley Haas School of Business creates 11 different ‘Identity Spaces’ for networking]

In response to a recently released campus racial climate survey, the Identity Spaces will provide opportunities “for students from historically underrepresented groups (HUGs) to organize and socialize on campus.”

The project will serve as the new home for the Asian Student Center, the Center for Women, Centro Latinx, the Emory Black Student Union, and LGBT+ Life

In particular, the newly created Asian Student Center will “serve Asian Pacific Islander Desi/American (AIPD/A) students.”  

The four other groups have temporarily been housed in the Alumni Memorial University Center since 2021.

In Cox Hall, the five new spaces will be constructed on the third floor and each group will have its own space while also sharing common areas.

[RELATED: AU offers separate classroom, saying it’s a ‘safe space for Black Students’]

University President Gregory L. Fenves remarked that “[t]he revitalization and reimagining of these spaces will build on the ideas and work of generations of Emory students, faculty, and staff members who have envisioned a united, welcoming, and inclusive university.”

“Identity spaces at Emory help empower our students to engage and thrive by nurturing in them a sense of community that affirms and uplifts student voices,” he added. 

Campus Reform has reached out to all relevant parties and will update this story accordingly.