Global and ethnic understanding is a prominent issue seen in America, due to the lack of racial awareness that we have. This has especially come to light due to the recent events of hate crimes against minorities and overwhelming numbers of racist incidents. Especially in small towns where racial awareness can be hard to come across, I believe that education in this facet would greatly benefit our society in becoming more accepting while gearing people towards a better, more global environment in both a classroom and work setting.
Having an education basis in adolescents to procure more global-minded thinking helps to enforce and promote these ideas of cultural understanding. This can be seen in experimental studies where, in areas of lower education, after dialogues and information centered around racial awareness, the majority of adolescents were able to become more ethnically aware by almost 20% (Adriana et. al, 2012). This information and data are extremely vital to understand because this displays how education in a classroom setting for children is essential to help them understand racial acceptance so that they can be more aware and open to learning on a global scale. I would especially like to place emphasis that this change was prominently seen in areas of lower education where this type of cultural learning could be difficult to obtain. Thus, it is also important to actively bring and promote this education in smaller areas.
However, that is not to say that education on racial awareness should stop at a young age. Addressing these issues should be an ongoing education that continues into older individuals of college-age and beyond. Studies involved in this analysis display that, “Using a 10-year longitudinal sample of 8,634 alumni from 229 institutions, diversity workshop participation is significantly and positively related” towards individual growth, beliefs, and social skills (Bowman et.al, 2016). I think that this shows that having an open environment geared towards having racial acceptance in older individuals is important in aiding individual growth and understanding of ethnic issues. In small areas, people can forgo this experience due to the lack of opportunity, but, as seen in recent studies, this is essential in preparing people for the future of working with others in a global environment and market (Diggles, 2014).
While there are many positives towards having a global education, that is not to say that this is something that will easily be recognized and wanted by the general public. Issues around having these topics being implemented in an educational setting is that it can take away from one’s core education and many people can be resistant to these changes because of the unwillingness to address their societal privilege. Therefore, although these points are valid, this does not take away from the fact that racial awareness is still a prevalent problem in America. Addressing the first issue, I think that education in globalization is equally important to any other class or subject that one might take in a classroom setting because it aids in both individual and societal growth. Additionally, while resistance might be met at first, especially in small towns where racial awareness is not promoted, this should not stop or inhibit this process. We can combat resistance by creating more community and social-based events and experiences aimed towards racial and cultural growth to create a fun environment that still focuses on these issues (Diggles, 2014).
Thus, while it might initially be difficult to get an education on racial awareness accepted by the general public, it is important and essential to drive for this to be implemented in an educational setting, especially in small areas, to promote greater cultural understanding and lead towards a more productive society.
Works Cited Page
Adriana Aldana, Stephanie J. Rowley, Barry Checkoway & Katie Richards-Schuster (2012) Raising Ethnic-Racial Consciousness: The Relationship Between Intergroup Dialogues and Adolescents’ Ethnic-Racial Identity and Racism Awareness, Equity & Excellence in Education, 45:1, 120–137, DOI: 10.1080/10665684.2012.641863
Bowman, Nicholas A., Nida Denson, and Julie J. Park. “Racial/cultural awareness workshops and post-college civic engagement: A propensity score matching approach.” American Educational Research Journal 53.6 (2016): 1556–1587.
Diggles, Kimberly. “Addressing racial awareness and color‐blindness in higher education.” New Directions for Teaching and Learning 2014.140 (2014): 31–44.