News Story

Rooting Out Suspected Bias A Full-Time Job At U-M

University will spend $85 million, enlist ‘campus and community partners’

The University of Michigan has posted a job opening for a full-time position called a “bias incident prevention and response coordinator” that will pay between $46,000 and $57,000 annually.

“The core work of the Dean of Students Office includes promoting a safe, respectful, healthy, and inclusive campus community, enhancing students’ Michigan experience, providing support services and managing critical incidents impacting students and the campus community, and recognizing and responding to emerging needs within the student population,” the University of Michigan’s website states.

The bias incident prevention and response coordinator would report to the assistant dean of students.

In October, U-M announced that it would spend an additional $85 million over the next five years to promote diversity and inclusivity on its campuses. In 2016, the university spent $40 million to promote diversity. The state gave the University of Michigan $363.1 million in 2017-18, including funding for all of its campuses.

The website was first to report the job posting. The job description states that 40 percent of the job would entail coordinating response efforts. That includes receiving accusations of bias and reviewing them with “campus and community partners” for investigation and response.

The position also “creates and develops a diverse team of Student Life and campus partners to provide direct support to targets of bias who have reached out to the Dean of Students Office for assistance.”

Many colleges have similar positions.

Grand Valley State University has a “bias incident protocol” under which the university will review incidents.

Michigan Capitol Confidential submitted a Freedom of Information Act seeking documentation of bias incidents reported to GVSU.

Some of the complaints were minor, including one of a person sending out a picture of an individual who posted on a dorm room door’s white board “did u know ur annoying?” Other complaints included the words “I am A Nazi” written on a white board, along with a swastika. In another incident, the words “Kill Obama” and “Hitler Did Nothing Wrong” were scratched on a piece of property. Another involved two people who wore T-shirts that read “Socialism is for [anti-gay slur].”

Michigan Capitol Confidential is the news source produced by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy. Michigan Capitol Confidential reports with a free-market news perspective.