Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies program to launch this spring

Comparative Race and Ethnic Studies, commonly referred to as CRES, is an interdisciplinary initiative aimed at establishing the study of diverse cultures as a key component of TCU’s curriculum and in all aspects of university life. The program, launching this spring, will explore race and ethnicity as active social, political, historical and cultural processes.

According to 2016 demographic data collected by the Pew Research Center, “Americans are more racially and ethnically diverse than in the past,” and the millennial generation, those born after 1980, are the “most racially diverse generation in American history,” with 43 percent of adults being non-white.

With this changing face of America, institutions of higher education must provide opportunities to expose students to issues of diversity and provide opportunities to change perceptions so that graduates can succeed in a global society.

“Race and ethnicity matter in our everyday lives,” said Max Krochmal, assistant professor of history. “CRES will allow faculty, staff and students to develop, debate and discuss significant questions about race and ethnicity through a multitude of disciplinary lenses.

“CRES complements TCU’s ongoing efforts to bridge racial and ethnic divides and foster intercultural competency, helping us create a more equitable campus environment and global community.”

TCU’s Core Curriculum has included several dozen courses that focus on cultural and global awareness for more than a decade. Additionally, the university recognizes hundreds of student organizations; advocates and promotes diversity, inclusiveness and cultural awareness through the Inclusiveness & Intercultural Services division; and has recently added new minors such as the new African American and Africana Studies minor and Latina/o Studies. Moreover, the Chief Inclusion Officer and Title IX Coordinator position created last fall underscores the university’s commitment to enrich our culture and ensure a welcoming environment for all.

Initiated by student demand and supported by nearly 100 faculty and staff members, CRES provides a formal structure for TCU to expand academic initiatives that are essential to success in the diverse world in which our graduates will live, work and play.

CRES will offer a Bachelor of Arts major as well as a minor, an emphasis and core courses for non-majors. The major requires 30 credits plus four hours of associated requirements, including interdisciplinary courses that carry the CRES prefix and at least one course that focuses on race and ethnicity in a global context. Additionally, CRES will partner with Women and Gender Studies and support other interdisciplinary programs, including Asian Studies, Middle East Studies, Jewish Studies, British & Post-Colonial Studies, Urban Studies and the Discovering Global Citizenship Quality Enhancement Plan.

Faculty members are encouraged to develop and teach courses in their respective disciplines that will count for credit toward the CRES program. To view the program’s learning outcomes or to submit an existing course for consideration, visit CRES. Contact Emily Farris, assistant professor of political science, or Claire Sanders, professor of history, with any questions related to curriculum.

Additionally, all TCU faculty, staff and students are invited to affiliate with the CRES program as core, associate or supporting members. To view the criteria for affiliation and to participate, visit CRES Affiliate.