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The Dartmouth
May 20, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Roth Center: It Will Take More Than New Building to Change Student Attitude

To the Editor:

I applaud the New York Times coverage of the opening of the new Roth Center for Jewish Life at Dartmouth [Dartmouth Reveals Anti-Semitic Past," Nov. 11]. This is a great achievement for our school where traditions die hard. A building as beautiful as the Roth Center is truly a blessing for our campus.

We cannot rest, however, and congratulate ourselves on our diversity. Issues of race and class still divide students at Dartmouth and at schools around the country. In recent years, Dartmouth has seen acts of bigotry and racism on campus. Last week, in fact, many students spoke out against a publication that printed jokes which many students perceived as racist in intent. This publication is currently being investigated.

Our goal is not only to create havens like the Roth Center for minority students, but to have all students develop an appreciation of each other's cultures and backgrounds. We need to have a rational dialogue among students, something that is absent from our campuses.

While the Roth Center is welcome and needed, it will take much more than new buildings and an admission of a shameful past to change the collective student attitude.