CORRESPONDENCE

Make Black history core to degrees, tie tenure to anti-racism efforts

Elite institutions are well positioned to set the standard on how to dismantle systemic racism and discrimination. As African American and Black women working at a leading US medical school, we are tired of rhetoric and euphemisms that are not yet matched with policy and action. We are ready to engage in a productive partnership with our institutional leaders to create a culture of diversity and inclusion that acts on principles of social justice and human rights.

Immediate actions should include making all institutions of learning teach compulsory courses on the Black diaspora for all degree programmes. A diverse range of faculty members should be hired to run them to attract more diverse students. And these faculty members should be engaged in leadership-development programmes to empower them to become decision makers as department chairs, deans, provosts, chancellors, university presidents and members of boards of trustees.

Those who currently hold such positions need to support action in areas that include funding, resources and endowments for sustainable programmes that embrace the strength of diversity. Advancement and tenure should be tied to excellence in diversity efforts.

Nature 583, 683 (2020)

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