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Half of students say Hillel sponsorship of Mock lecture acceptable

Slightly more than three quarters of students say diversity training should be mandatory for faculty

By
news editor
Thursday, April 14, 2016
This article is part of the series Spring 2016 Poll

The Herald’s spring undergraduate poll, conducted April 6, 7 and 11 in J. Walter Wilson, the Faunce Campus Center and the Sciences Library, found that about half of students polled disagreed that Brown/RISD Hillel should not have sponsored a talk by Janet Mock, a transgender rights activist, because of the organization’s ties to the state of Israel.

A petition advancing this argument, signed by over 150 people, led Mock to cancel her talk last month. Of the students who strongly agreed that Hillel should not have sponsored the talk, about 8.6 percent said they felt informed about events on campus while 27 percent felt uninformed.

The poll also found that about 46 percent of students approve of how President Christina Paxson P’19 is handling her job — about a 3 percentage point increase from last semester — while about 19 percent of students polled disapprove.

About 57.1 percent of students who strongly disapproved of Paxson indicated that they feel very informed about events on campus, while 32.1 percent of students who strongly approved of Paxson felt very informed.

The Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan states that voluntary diversity training has been proven to be more effective than mandatory training in promoting diversity and inclusion. Despite this statement, more than 75 percent of students agreed that diversity training should be mandatory for faculty members.

Despite the assault of a Dartmouth student during the Latinx conference in November, 75.4 percent of students agree that the Department of Public Safety makes them feel safe; just slightly more than 8 percent of students disagreed. But students are more divided over the arming of DPS officers: Over 50 percent of students agreed and 28.2 percent disagreed that DPS officers should continue to be armed.

Of students who strongly agreed that DPS officers should continue to be armed, 28.4 percent feel very informed about events on campus. Of those who strongly disagreed that DPS should be armed, 37.2 percent said they feel very informed.

Nearly 80 percent of students said they go to athletic events in their entirety or close to their entirety no more than once or twice a semester. About 30 percent of those who go to athletic events at least once or twice a month are legacy students. Legacy students constituted 14.3 percent of poll-takers.

About 80 percent of students attend artistic events — such as theater productions, comedy shows or music performances — at least once or twice a semester. The percentage of women who attend an artistic event at least once or twice a month was higher than the percentage of men who do the same — 46 percent compared to 37.5 percent. In addition, a higher percentage of white students attend artistic events more frequently. Around 44 percent of students who said they had never attended an artistic event identified as white, though white students made up about 58 percent of students polled.

About 80 percent of students attend artistic events — such as theater productions, comedy shows or music performances — at least once or twice a semester. The percentage of women who attend an artistic event at least once or twice a month was higher than the percentage of men who do the same — 46 percent compared to 37.5 percent. In addition, a higher percentage of white students attend artistic events more frequently. Around 44 percent of students who said they had never attended an artistic event identified as white, though white students made up about 58 percent of students polled.

About 28 percent of students who used no resources — such as professional or student tutoring, preparation books or free resources — to gain admission to college identified themselves as first-generation students, who made up only 17 percent of poll-takers.

On the other hand, legacy students were more likely to have used paid professional testing tutors or paid student testing tutors when applying to college. About 22 percent of the students who used these tutoring resources were legacy students.

Of students concentrating in business, entrepreneurship and organizations or economics, about 81 percent indicated that passion for the subject influenced their concentration choice. In contrast, for students in every other field, more than 90 percent indicated that passion was a factor. About 77 percent of students concentrating in BEO or economics indicated chances of employment as a factor in choosing their concentration. About 68 percent of physical science concentrators also designated chances of employment as a factor. Just 31 percent of humanities concentrators indicated the same.

About 25 percent of students marked that they have never hooked up with anyone at Brown. The poll defined “hooking up” as “making out or more intimate encounters including those in relationships.”

Just 8.6 percent of athletes marked that they have not hooked up with anyone at Brown, while 26.8 percent of non-athletes polled indicated they had not hooked up with anyone at Brown. In addition, the higher their class year, the more likely students were to have hooked up with someone at Brown. About 33 percent of first-year students indicated that they had not hooked up with anyone at Brown, compared to just 12.9 percent of seniors. Just 8 percent of BEO or economics concentrators indicated they have not hooked up, compared to 38 percent of physical science concentrators and 29 percent of life science concentrators.

Correction: A previous version of this article stated that the petition against Brown/RISD Hillel's sponsorship of Janet Mock's lecture was signed by over 200 student. In fact, it was signed by over 150 people. The Herald regrets the error.