Gyergyóremete Proclamation Against Academic Discrimination and for Minority Serving Regional Universities Worldwide
WE THE PEOPLE assembled to discuss the future of minorities in the knowledge society, in order to secure and perpetuate the benefits of learning and research, to promote respectful inclusiveness and true diversity of cultures, do establish this proclamation.
Progress of Humanity needs Respect for Minorities and Cultural Diversity
WHEREAS nearly 1 billion people live in minority status worldwide, less than 15 percent of their country’s population and most of these people come from underrepresented small nations, speak uncommon languages, live in minority cultures and reside in minority regions;
WHEREAS world history, recent economic crises and the history of science provide many examples that the majority can be wrong and only full appreciation of cultural diversity can leave the door open for alternative and better ways to success;
WHEREAS the greatest discoveries often start in minority; the history of science provides many illustrations of landmark discoveries being rejected by the majority for many years and effective, innovative researchers pushed aside by the majority;
WHEREAS in the emerging knowledge society, diversity should be protected, cultural respect should be promoted and small nations and minority cultures deserve appreciation to recognize the rights of communities and to lay the foundation of future successes;
Higher Education is the Key to Personal Success
WHEREAS in the knowledge society, higher education is the key to the best paying high skills jobs, to greater overall quality of life, to effective competition, and to influential leadership positions.
WHEREAS brainy regions with major universities tend to have vibrant cultural life, low divorce rates, low crime rate, higher job creation, beneficial ethnic diversity, and creative entrepreneurs; such cities successfully retain talents and attract back those who have left the region.
WHEREAS many inspiring international examples illustrate the effectiveness of minority serving universities in turning around the life of disadvantaged minorities, elevating education, improving health status and achieving effective leadership in society.
Regional University is the Magnet for Economic Development
WHEREAS in the society of knowledge, high-tech industry is most powerful wealth generator for the region and academia is the necessary knowledge generator;
WHEREAS universities are magnets for regional economic development due to rich source of newly trained professionals and university research that can partner for product development and launching of innovative start-up companies;
WHEREAS the modern comprehensive regional university of sciences is symbol of cultural pride and prestige, source of future leaders that makes the region an attractive place to live and a place where many local cultural and community events have the greatest impact
WHEREAS major companies and high tech industries seeking expansion look for educated workforce, synergies with nearby research laboratories, educational opportunities for families, rich cultural environment and overall good quality of life. In other words, they are looking for a region with comprehensive university of sciences;
WHEREAS the prosperous regional university is a source of educational and career opportunities, source of future leaders and role models and welcoming opportunity for highly educated people to come and stay in the region.
WHEREAS many minority regions show the vitality and success of local universities: Tuzla Canton has a population of 600,000 and a university of 16,500 students; the Virgin Islands has a population of 100,000 and a university of 6000 students. Among many other examples, the highly regarded catalan universities of Spain made the language of the minority their official language and offer access to full range of education.
Many Students from Minority Communities Face Marginalization
WHEREAS it is an immense tragedy that many majority dominated universities that supposed to symbolize free speech and inclusive pursuit of science betray their noble mission by becoming instruments of majority power, minority discrimination and marginalization;
WHEREAS majority dominated universities often restrict minority access by geographic distance, limiting educational offerings in languages of local minorities, preferential admission of majority students, underfunding science and technology studies in minority languages.
WHEREAS many, majority dominated universities create an unwelcoming academic environment by marginalizing or excluding signage and symbols important to the nearby minority, misrepresenting history and heritage of local minorities, and disproportionately under-representing local minorities in senior faculty and university leadership.
Minority Regions are Disadvantaged by Lack of Local Universities
WHEREAS majority dominated higher education systems often deny the benefits of universities acting as cultural centers and magnets of economic development in minority regions by supporting university headquarters, large faculty and higher paying job creation only in majority regions.
WHEREAS majority dominated higher education systems often selectively limit minority education to traditional arts (e.g., native language theater, traditional craft, folk dance and music) while teaching natural sciences, technology, social sciences and humanities preferentially in the majority language.
WHEREAS majority dominated higher education policies drain talents from minority areas, protract approval of minority serving universities that are launched by civic organizations and deny support for minority serving research and educational institutions;
WHEREAS the people of small nations and minorities deserve local universities where they can send their talented sons and daughters with a sense of trust and without fear of giving up traditions and minority culture
NOW, therefore, we the assembled people do hereby proclaim the rights of minorities and small nations to minority serving regional universities and do urge people everywhere to support cultural diversity and inclusive environment in the pursuit of science and higher education:
I. Small nations and minority regions deserve strong, locally headquartered, fully accredited, minority controlled, publicly supported, minority serving, primarily teaching on local language, comprehensive (humanities, sciences, technologies, engineering and mathematics) universities of science that can provide local access to highest education, advance cutting edge research and serve as magnets of economic and cultural development in the minority region;
II. The Székelyland wants and deserves its strong, locally headquartered, fully accredited, Székely-Hungarian minority controlled, publicly supported, primarily Hungarian language, minority serving comprehensive university of science that serves as magnet of economic and cultural development in the Székelyland.
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Curtis Gergley, Canada3 years ago Comments: I full support this excellent initiative.
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