From Every Nation: The Revised Comprehensive Plan for Racial Justice, Reconciliation, and Cross-Cultural Engagement at Calvin College

First adopted in 2003 by the faculty and in 2004 by the Board of Trustees of Calvin College, this document articulates a vision, as well as goals and strategies for “transforming Calvin into a college that is always vigilant in recognizing racism, always conscientious in promoting reconciliation, and always active in the work of restoring a healthy multicultural community” (FEN, 8).

The document addresses five critical areas: Personnel, Students, Curriculum and Instruction, Partners and Constituencies, and Campus Environment.

The ultimate goal of FEN is to work toward a multicultural Kingdom of God (p. 11) like the one described in Revelation 7:9:

There before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people, and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb.”

FEN Themes

Three broad themes shape the goals and strategies articulated within the document. These themes work simultaneously rather than sequentially.

  1. Multicultural citizenship (p. 7): Expand cross-cultural experiences; cultivate intercultural sensitivities
  2. Anti-racism and accountability (p. 7): Continuing effort to identify the sin of racism and its effects; make structural changes that will promote greater accountability and enable us to escape and avoid traps of institutional racism
  3. Reconciliation and restoration (p. 8): Develop a positive vision of shalom; Model shalom in our community

Key Goals

  • Develop a more racially and culturally diverse and welcoming campus (p. 55, 57, 59)
  • Instruction will reflect significant sensitivity to racial and cultural diversity. Curriculum will introduce students to global perspectives and impart a commitment to counter racism and embody reconciliation (p.61, 62, 63).
  • Programing will celebrate international commitments and reflect the diversity present in the student body (p. 64).
  • All constituencies that support the college will understand and embrace Calvin’s commitment to racial justice and reconciliation (p. 65).
  • The physical campus will reflect, respect, and invite a diverse campus community (p.68)
  • The college will work towards a multicultural campus, not simply as a high-minded ideal, but as if it is a dictate of biblical justice. (p.69)
  • The college will regularly evaluate the intercultural sensitivity and cross-cultural experiences of the campus (p.70)

FEN Timeline, Progress, and Milestones

  • 1985 “Comprehensive Plan for Integrating North American Ethnic Minority Persons and Their Interests into Every Facet of Calvin’s Institutional Life”
  • 1999 Denomination initiates participation in Crossroads Anti-Racism training
  • 2001–2003 Comprehensive Plan study and revisions
  • 2003 FEN ratification by faculty
  • 2004 FEN ratification by board of trustees
  • 2008–2009 FEN goals under 5-year review
  • 2010 Fifth critical area, Campus Climate, is added and approved by Faculty Senate
  • 2012 Amended FEN Professional Development Requirements for faculty are approved