Friday, December 11, 2009

When the Apes Run the Asylum

What's the Arcus foundation been up to?

K-College grant to build social-justice leaders

Kalamazoo College has received a $2.1 million grant that will launch and fund the first two years of the new Arcus Center for Social Justice Leadership, the college was to announce today.

The center, first announced in April and expected to open next fall, is intended to develop leadership skills in students who will work in fields that promote human rights and social justice.

The grant is from the Arcus Foundation, whose founder and president is Kalamazoo billionaire Jon Stryker. The foundation’s main focuses are gay rights and preservation of great apes.

Stryker graduated from K-College in 1982 and sits on its board of trustees.

The grant will pay for programming at the new Arcus Center as well as the hiring of an executive director, academic director and support staff for the initial years.

But ultimately, college officials say, the college will ask the foundation to provide endowment funding that would generate a $1 million annual budget for the center.

The size of that endowment is yet to be seen, but officials said earlier this year that funding for the center would likely exceed the largest grant K-College had ever received. That grant, for $5.6 million, was also from the Arcus Foundation. It pays for a program meant to boost diversity on campus.

“We are honored by the Arcus Foundation’s trust in our vision and thrilled to be able to make this vision a reality,” K-College President Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran said in a statement.

Officials say that their current vision is for the center to provide an array of programs, from conferences and lectures by social justice experts to short-term residencies for scholars, artists and activists.

Arcus Foundation Urvashi Vaid said the “unique and innovative collaboration” with the college will help develop “the next generation of social-justice leaders.”

The center will be located on campus in the former L. Lee Stryker Center.
A commenter asks an impontant question.

Why doesn't the Arcus Foundation also create a Great Apes Center for Social Leadership at Kalamazoo College? I think the Arcus leaders should be true to their mission.
This raises a number of other questions.

Why doesn't Kalamazoo have a great ape anti-discrimination ordinance?

Why not admit great apes to Kalamazoo College? That would really increase 'diversity'.

What about gay great apes? Who's looking out for them?

Someone needs to fight evil discrimination like this:

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