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Catalina Castillo-Lozano '22

ARS Nova participant Catalina Castillo-Lozano.

Major: Mathematics

Bio: Catalina Castillo-Lozano is from Santa Clarita, California. Catalina is a current junior at Fordham College Lincoln Center majoring in Mathematics double minoring in Spanish and Theology. Catalina is on the pre-Law track and plans to attend law school and practice public interest law. As a part of the Engaged Learning Fellowship through the Center for Community Engaged Learning, Catalina has begun her own research study about Fordham's Action plan addressing racism and educating for justice.

Mentor: Ms. Vanessa Rotando
Abstract: On June 29, 2020, President Joseph M. McShane, S.J. released the Fordham University Action Plan to address racism and educate for justice in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder and the ensuing protests. We will investigate the development process of this plan, evaluate the effects of the plan on the Fordham community, and propose amendments to the plan. By conducting interviews with Fordham students, faculty, staff, and administrators from diverse backgrounds, we aim to compile their knowledge of racism in the Fordham community and specifically of the Fordham University Action Plan into a cohesive synopsis that mirrors the Fordham community at large. When reaching out to the Fordham community, many either declined to be interviewed or expressed fear about how their words would be distributed, demonstrating a pervasive threat of retribution at Fordham that we seek to counteract with this project. A common theme was that the anti-racist rhetoric Fordham espouses often does not feel backed up by concrete actions, or any actions taken by Fordham administration or in specific departments are not shared with the broader Fordham community. Many interviewees also felt that Residential Life or Student Affairs should take on a more active role in ensuring the physical and emotional safety of BIPOC students. We hope that this project will encourage discussion about anti-racism at Fordham, and how we can continue on the journey towards following the Jesuit mission.