Resources for Students of Color

Tufts-Skidmore is committed to working to improve the experience of Students of Color and to increase their participation on the program. As part of that effort, the program focuses awareness on racism in Spain and works to increase awareness and anti-racist support across the board, both inside and outside of the program. We’re here to listen to you, to share your experience and to assist you in facing any race-related challenges that may arise.

We offer a peer lead Student of Color Affinity Group as part of our Intercultural Focus Group (IFG) program, to provide a safe space for discussion and support among students who may share similar experiences and challenges while in Spain. The program provides training and mentoring for staff, faculty, Spanish peer mentors and host families in the principles of anti-racism, and in how to offer effective support to a student who has experienced a racist microaggression.

The program teams with other anti-racist collectives and agencies in Madrid in promoting awareness and justice around the issue of race and racism (and its intersections) in Spain and Europe. ​Although racist hate crimes are rare here, Students of Color can reasonably expect to be affected by racism at some time during their stay here. Spain has its own particular expression of racist attitudes and practices, which at times can seem flagrant to Students of Color who have previously been exposed to racism only in the U.S. For example, uses of black-face in advertising, racist sayings (“es trabajo de chinos”) or racist attitudes on public transportation.

Because the concept of American multiculturalism is still foreign to many in Spain, students who do not look stereotypically American to a Spanish person (i.e., White, blonde, blue eyed), may be asked blunt questions about their race or ethnicity or national origin and they may feel singled out or agressed. Additionally, the Spanish university continues to have a low representation of Students of Color, and minority students studying on our program may find themselves to be the only POC in their class at the Spanish university.

While most Spaniards are horrified when they see or hear about overt racism in Spain, their usual response is to insist that Spain is “not a racist country,” something that can intensify, rather than de-escalate the suffering caused by racism. Many Spaniards, including those at the university, know little to nothing about structural or institutional racism, and lack critical consciousness about Spain’s colonial past in Latin American and Africa, and its implication in the racism that continues here to this day. Unfortunately, many Spaniards continue to see the conquest and colonization of the Americas as a source of Spanish pride, and to deny the reality that Afro-Spaniards are the product of the Spanish colonization of Guinea, and not immigration. There is MUCH work to be done here, and Tufts-Skidmore is proud to play a role in supporting the grassroots efforts of racialized communities in Spain to raise consciousness around issues of race and racism in Spain.

In general, the Program recommends that all students, of Color and White, resist racist attitudes and practices openly, whether they are exposed to them in Spain, in the United States or in any other part of the world.

In the event of a racist incident, no matter how slight, the Program Director insists that you report it to her immediately so that she and the staff can validate your experience, offer you the support and guidance that you need, and so that the incident may be documented and shared with the appropriate authorities.

 

  • Perspectives on Mindfulness and Justice. Perspectives lectures are framed within the program’s abiding mission of educating about justice, intercultural intelligence and mindfulness practices.
  • SOC IFG. This IFG Affinity group is intended to be a space of support where Students of Color can discuss questions, concerns, and personal experiences throughout their semester here in Madrid.
  • Program Classes: Identity & Intersectionality, In Women’s Words. These program courses offer a sustained focus on the intersection of race and gender, along with related areas of analysis.
  • Abya Yala. Latin American students association
  • Afroféminas. Online community for Women of Color
  • Espacio Conciencia Afro. Cultural and activist space for People of Color
  • Espacio Muchas. de Fundación Entredós. Monthly lectures by Women of Color
  • Intersect Madrid. Non profit association aimed to empower and connect the diverse English-speaking community in Madrid
  • Kwanzaa. University association for Students of Color
  • Madrid Resistance. Part of Women’s March Madrid. Collective organizing on social justice struggles in Madrid, in Spain, and around the world, always from an intersectional standpoint
  • Mezzkla. Intercultural art
  • The Black View. Actors, actresses and artists of color in Spain
  • Women’s March Madrid Chapter. Both a Community and a Platform that inspires and facilitates grassroots actions and organising campaigns by providing local coalitions with coordination, resources, training, toolkits, and communications channels