Associate Dean of the John V. Roach Honors College Dr. Ron Pitcok addresses crowd during the Lead On forum. (Photo by Bernice Ogbondah)

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TCU’s Lead On initiative held an open forum on strengthening the TCU experience and campus culture.

This forum was goal three of the initiative and was organized as an opportunity for students and the TCU community to gain more insight on the Lead On strategic plan. The forum was used as a way for students to voice their opinions on how TCU can develop and strengthen inclusion and engagement to support the student population on campus.

The facilitators and co-chairs of the open forum, associate dean of John V. Roach Honors College Dr. Ron Pitcok and director of Inclusiveness and Intercultural Services Timeka Gordon, focused the forum around four particular areas established by the TCU board of trustees: the front door, inclusion, engagement and TCU’s brand.

The forum opened with a series of questions that attendees answered with their smartphones to collect the data from the event.

Word collage with attendee’s answers from the question “What words describe TCU” during the goal three open forum. (Photo by Bernice Ogbondah)

Many of the questions had similar answers — attendees felt TCU had a problem with diversity and the campus culture was not inclusive.

When asked to describe TCU’s culture the audience’s main answers were white and Greek. 

Many of the students who spoke advocated for a diversity course to be required in the curriculum or an inclusiveness training  similar to the sexual assault training students must complete their first semester at TCU.

Third-year strategic communication major Maia Gunn said every year TCU has committees similar to Lead On and described them as a “lip service.” Every year students of color feel tricked because when they are recruited TCU is presented as diverse, however, once they get on campus that is not at all they see, she said.

African Americans only make up less than five percent of TCU’s undergraduate population. The next Lead On open forum will be October 30 from 2 to 3 p.m. in the Brown Lupton University Union Auditorium and will be centered around the fourth goal, strengthening the workforce.