Stereotypes only cover the surface-level of an individual and the Ferris Office of Multicultural Student Services (OMSS) is working to help people look at each other in depth.
OMSS is holding a campaign called #NoType, a fight to teach students about stereotypes and allows students to make a pledge against them.
“We hope that this is an opportunity to engage and really just address stereotypes but also leave there with some resources on how to be better,” Assistant Director of OMSS Michael Wade said.
#NoType is from noon to 3 p.m., Oct. 17 through 19. The campaign is at a table in the University Center, where students can learn about stereotypes, hear the stories of fellow students and share their personal experiences with stereotypes.
Wade said that stereotypes “are oversimplified thoughts or ideas about a person or thing,” which doesn’t only mean racial bias.
“It could be, ‘This is what college is like,’” Wade said. “Or it could be ‘This is what vegetarians are like.’ It could be, ‘This is what black people, women, or Hispanics or Muslims, whatever it is, are like.’ And so, if you have a very small window of exposure about what that group is, your vision, a lot of times, is gonna be just in that window.”
This is the second year of #NoType. According to Wade, over a thousand students made pledges against stereotypes during the 2016 campaign.
“It’s 2017 and people think this stuff doesn’t exist. Well, it does,” Ferris business and biology senior Sharell Williams said. “And some people are blind to it, like, because they didn’t grow up around certain stuff.”
Ferris graphic media management senior Tod’Nita Taylor participated in the campaign last year.
“I think it just, like, awakens people’s perspective,” Taylor said. “Nobody wants to be a stereotype and I think it just shows everybody perspective on like, what stereotypes are and what stereotypes mean to them in general.”
Wade’s goal for #NoType is to show students how they might be stereotyping and what they can do to prevent it.
“We want students to be open-minded at all times about themselves and about other people,” Wade said. “That’s where opportunities happen. That’s where growth happens.”