NY students play social justice BOARD GAME at mandatory training

"Factuality" teaches the idea of "privilege" based on immutable traits like one's race, gender, etc.

Canisius College forces leaders of student groups to attend a training that features a social justice-themed board game.

One event attendee told Campus Reform that he believed the event "did more harm than good."

Student club leaders at a New York school were forced to participate in a mandatory training session that included a social justice-themed board game.

Canisius College required two executive board members from each student organization to attend its September fall club summit, according to a flier obtained by Campus Reform.

“Factuality” is a combination of a board game and discussion in which participants play with a sexually and racially diverse cast of characters. “Each character encounters a series of fact-based advantages and limitations based on the intersection of their race, gender, sexual orientation, faith, and class,” according to the game’s website.

[Related: University rolls out required diversity training]

This is the first time “Factuality” has been presented at the college, according to the game’s site, and the game ran for nearly two hours.

The game requires participants to choose a character that does not match their identity, then engage in a “facilitated conversation” with regard to race, gender, and other identity categories. 

“Factuality’s” promotional materials boast that within 90 minutes, players “will become acquainted with the intricacies of inequality’s intentionally structured foundation and its crippling cyclical nature...be able to dismantle the various preconceived biases associated with various marginalized groups...[and] will leave self-aware and can (begin to) contribute to inclusive rhetoric regarding the dissolution of structural inequality.”

[Related: GW diversity module advises students not to say ‘lame’ or ‘insane,’ suggests not being illegal is a ‘privilege’]

“The left-wing bias during the event was clear,” Justin Begley, summit attendee and president of Canisius College’s Young Americans for Freedom, told Campus Reform. “The club summit has always been something that club leaders were required to go to to learn how to access their funding and appeal for more funding. But this year, the school used it to push the narrative of and pander to the woke left on campus by pushing intersectionality with arguments that are easy to debunk.”

“Only anecdotes and faulty statistics were used to support [the host’s] case during the game, which made it frustrating to sit through. In the end, I believe it did more harm than good,” Begley, who is also a Campus Reform correspondent, said.

Begley said that student groups have to send representatives to the summit in order to get funding.

The Campus Reform correspondent also claimed that Natalie Gillard, “Factuality’s” creator and host at the event, was reported to have told participants “for those that had the character that was the most oppressed and poor, if you ended the game financially better than you started it, you should not celebrate that. Instead, you should use what you now have to create change and advocate for those that are all still facing discrimination and oppression.”

Neither Gillard nor Canisius College responded to requests for comment.

“Not a single solution was offered,” he said, noting that the training made “minority students feel like victims because if you keep telling someone they are a victim, they will eventually believe it. It was a very disappointing experience.”

Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @arik_schneider