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University of New Mexico seeks ‘decolonized music education’ professor

Applicants could also have background in ‘social justice’ and DEI

Applicants for a University of New Mexico music professor position should have an interest in “decolonized music education curriculum,” according to an open job listing.

Other potential interests include “social justice,” or “community-engaged performance practices,” according to the job posting for a visiting assistant professor.

“A demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion and student success as well as working with broadly diverse communities,” is also sought.

The job requirements are about the university’s “2040 goals” for “diversity” on campus, according to a university statement sent to The College Fix.

“The College [of Fine Arts], along with the University, has a longstanding commitment to the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion,” a spokesperson told The College Fix via email.

The College of Fine Arts “is in full support of the University’s 2040 goals to respect and celebrate the differences of all persons, and value working and learning in a collaborative environment where diversity is cherished with a shared sense of belonging.”

Among other things, these 2040 goals include “address[ing] historical and current injustices and inequities among URM and other minoritized faculty,” and “doubling Hispanic doctoral student [enrollment] through analyzing doctoral student demographic composition by race and ethnicity and doctoral degree conferral rates by race and ethnicity.”

The university did not directly address questions asked about examples of social justice and music and what “decolonized music education curriculum” means.

MORE: Music scholar calls black Communist dad racist for liking white composers

“The mission of the University of New Mexico’s College of Fine Arts is to positively impact the region and empower all underrepresented people of the state to pursue a high-quality education in the fine arts,” the college stated.

“[T]he College itself provides a comprehensive curriculum and incorporates DEI values in music education that provide a strong practical, theoretical, and philosophical foundation for all its students,” a spokesperson said.

An education commentator criticized “decolonization” in music education.

Heartland Institute fellow S.T. Karnick called it “the academic equivalent of tearing down the statues of great leaders of the past,” in an email to The Fix.

“Programs that promote such doctrines are doing students and their parents a disservice and undermining the foundations of the civilization on which those very institutions depend,” Karnick said.

“Taxpayers should not be dragooned into supporting these enormously destructive activities either directly or indirectly,” Karnick said. “The federal government should require all academic institutions that accept students’ Pell Grant or federal student loan money, or any other support through government money or regulations, to ensure that, at minimum, all campus programs align with the nation’s Bill of Rights.”

Karnick said, “institutions that want to undermine our freedoms of speech, religion, assembly, and firearms and the other rights and privileges of citizens of the United States should have to go their own way without taxpayer support.”

“Scholars have a right to think and say whatever is on their minds,” he said. They have no right, however, to use other people’s money for that purpose.”

The University of New Mexico is not the only school looking to incorporate DEI into the fine arts. For example, Ohio State University has an “anti-racist dance” instructor.

The University of California Berkeley also employs a “social justice theatre practitioner.”

MORE: Music education ‘remains inherently racist,’ scholars say

IMAGES: Monkey Business Images

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About the Author
Anna Wascovich -- Franciscan University of Steubenville