NMU’s “Remove the Label” campaign, designed to raise awareness about the damaging impact of stereotypes, received a Circle of Excellence Gold Award for diversity programs from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).
“Remove the Label” was launched in April 2016. The campaign urged the NMU community to assess people based on their individual traits rather than categorize them according to negative assumptions, misinformation or unfair generalizations. The highlight was an event in Jamrich Hall that encouraged students to rip off post-it notes with handwritten stereotypes from oversized posters on display. According to CASE, award judges were impressed by event’s interactive, clever approach to dealing with stereotypes. They also thought the program had a strong social media element.
Shirley Brozzo, associate director of the Multicultural Education and Resources Center, had seen a diversity campaign at another university that featured posters of minority students ripping up photos of their stereotypes. She approached NMU Marketing and Communications about doing something similar on this campus. The team brainstormed a campaign that included posters, the signature event, a dedicated website, video and broad social media presence.
“I think it’s a marvelous approach to this issue,” Brozzo said at the time of the campaign launch. “I was concerned at first because, when you read all of the labels, they hurt like crazy. But it’s an effective way to get the point across.”
To review the campaign, visit the website here.