University of Oregon Asks "What's Up with Whiteness?"

"This retreat can be one step on the journey toward becoming a better, more informed ally."

Are you a white person and not really sure what's up with that? I'm a white person and don't even know what that means, but the University of Oregon is on the case! Campus Reform reports that the school is holding an "Allyship Symposium" on January 20 to help white people be better white people. Or, in their words:

“What’s Up With Whiteness?” is intended to be a space where people at all stages of their social justice journey can engage with one another in entry-level conversations about white identity. Our hope is that this retreat can be one step on the journey toward becoming a better, more informed ally, and that it will equip participants with the tools needed to more actively and bravely engage in making change. 

 This retreat is the "allyship track" for the university's Women of Color Symposium ("A restorative healing event open to all Womxn of Color Students.") taking place on the same day. 

Tobin Klinger, the senior director for Public Affairs Communications at UO, told Campus Reform that “entry-level” conversations provide “an overview of terms and definitions, historical context, and reflection on their own held identities…for those who are looking for ways they can be more effective allies.”

What can people expect when learning to be a better ally? According to Klinger, “conversations that help participants [examine] their identities and the systems we are a part of in an effort to become more effective allies to marginalized populations within our communities." 

That is not how I spent my Saturdays in college.