USC Race and Equity Center seeks to ‘illuminate, disrupt and dismantle’ racism

Photo of Shaun Harper
Shaun Harper, founder and executive director of the USC Race and Equity Center, speaks at the LAUSD Racial Equity Leadership Academy Kick-Off at the Galen Center in 2020. (Photo/Steve Cohn)

Led by Shaun Harper, the USC Race and Equity Center is teaching business leaders, educators and administrators how to better serve their communities with evidence-based strategies to advance equity.

“Racism is America’s longest-standing social problem. Racial inequities remain pervasive in workplace settings and the larger society,” says Shaun Harper, executive director of the USC Race and Equity Center. “At the same time, our educational institutions teach students far too little, sometimes nothing at all, about diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI).”

Students in many fields are graduating without the skills needed to effectively address issues of race and implicit bias in their workplaces. “A lot of the work that we do at the Center is remediation,” says Harper. “We work with professionals to teach them the things they never learned in their educational training.”

The Center’s mission is to illuminate, dismantle and disrupt racism in all its forms and is “unapologetically race-forward,” according to Harper. It provides dynamic research, professional learning and organizational improvement for educational institutions, government agencies, nonprofit organizations and a multitude of industries in the U.S. and abroad. Participants in its evidence-based educational programs become leaders in the quest for racial equity and informed advocates for all those experiencing marginalization.

Read more about Shaun‘s story