Local News

Theme party causes controversy at NC State

Posted October 26, 2015 5:56 p.m. EDT
Updated October 27, 2015 11:19 a.m. EDT

— A controversial party, held on the heels of "Diversity Week," is causing a stir among students at North Carolina State University.

The party, held off campus Thursday night, involved a theme - CMT v. BET. Party goers were urged to attend dressed to parody country music culture and black culture.

"It is definitely a little bit disrespectful to act that way," said junior Kristen Hommel.

At Monday's monthly meeting of the school's Diversity Advisory Committee, the incident sparked new conversation.

"This is giving us an example of how we might look at things a bit differently and how we might talk with our community," said Amy Circosta, interim vice provost for institutional equity and diversity.

Officials say there will now be new roundtable discussions on diversity, in additional to new panels, programs and town halls on campus.

"It is disheartening to hear the message you're overreacting or being too sensitive because I think people with marginalized groups would turn around and say, 'You're not reacting enough,'" said Karli Moore, liaison for the Student Government Association.

In light of the party, committee members said many of the planned programs will target a different audience.

"We have a whole university of folks who don't entertain these conversations, that don't participate in diversity week, so this challenges us to really think about how we can engage those students that are not interested in diversity programming," said Roshunda Breeden, diversity coordinator for the Poole College of Management.

University officials said there is no evidence that Thursday's party was hosted by a campus organization, but the investigation is ongoing.