Language Sensitivity in Higher Education": Macromedia students discuss diversity concepts"

Language creates reality. An unprejudiced, diverse society therefore profits from continuous reflection in order to recognize and counter linguistic exclusion patterns. Macromedia University has now placed this reflection at the center of an event. Initiated by the student representatives of the Hochschule Macromedia Berlin, students, faculty and staff took part in committed discussions on Cultural Sensitivity, Black Lives Matter, Gender Equality and Sexual Identity.

„We are the most international and thus most diverse location of the Macromedia University of Applied Sciences. In Berlin, we discuss our students‘ concerns very openly and at eye level. We want to promote this culture together with the student council,“ says Prof. Dr. Brigitte Kleinselbeck. She supported Niclas Wenisch, Pius Noll and Lily Blechschmidt from the Berlin student council in organizing a virtual discussion event on the topic „Language Sensitivity in Higher Education“.

Diversity on Campus: Self-confident diversity

Speakers acquired by the organizing team included the president of the university, Prof. Dr. Dr. Kolo, who presented the Code of Conduct, Prof. Dr. Gernot Wolfram as chairman of the Diversity Commission, the student Pamela Nyandoro, who spoke about her experiences as a black student in Berlin, student Judyta Smykowski from the NGO „Leidmedien“ with advice on how to deal with disabled people appropriately, Dr. Merle Emre with reflections on gender-sensitive writing and Prof. Dr. Mo Badr with impressions from his own cosmopolitan life. At the moderator’s table, management student Timothy Miller impressed.

Transgender: Why pronouns are important

The most commented contribution of the evening came from Sky Bürhaus. As a trans*person, he contributed very specific perspectives on biological and social gender issues to the evening. „We were very keen to let affected students have their say. We owe the great and warm-hearted response from the audience to the approach of ‚Students for the University'“, Kleinselbeck emphasized.

Sky Bürhaus confirms this consideration: „It was incredibly inspiring to see a platform created for those in the minority to speak up and be heard, not just listened to. It’s important to have uncomfortable conversations and ask questions in order to grow as one campus community; and to see not only professors but also students attend showed that there’s an interest in learning about issues other people deal with on a day to day basis.“