Report: Somali Attacker Was Enrolled in ‘Crossing Identity Boundaries’ Course with ‘Microagressions’ Group Project

Abdul Razak Artan, a third-year student in logistics management, sits on the Oval in an August 2016 photo provided by The Lantern, student newspaper of Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, U.S. on November 28, 2016. Courtesy of Kevin Stankiewicz for The Lantern/Handout via REUTERS
Courtesy of Kevin Stankiewicz for The Lantern/Handout via REUTERS

Reason Magazine is reporting that Abdul Razak Ali Artan, the Somali refugee who attacked eleven people on the campus of Ohio State on Monday before being was shot and killed by a campus police officer, “was enrolled in a class called ‘Crossing Identity Boundaries.’ “

“In fact, he had a group project on “microaggressions” due later this week. The assignment, worth 15 percent of his grade, required students to find a dozen examples of microaggressions on social media and explain which identity groups were the victims, according to the syllabus,” Reason says.

The Ohio State University’s Office of Student Life Multicultural Center website confirms that three sections of ES HESA 2577 “Crossing Identity Boundaries” are offered during this fall semester at Ohio State University.

“Crossing Identity Boundaries: A Journey Towards Intercultural Leadership is a three-credit course designed to bring together students from different cultural and social identity groups in a facilitated learning environment,” the website states, adding:

Interactive dialogues engage students in exploring issues of diversity and inequality as well as their personal and social responsibility for building a more just university and society. Students gain valuable leadership skills that they can effectively utilize long beyond the classroom.

“One of Artan’s classmates who was part of his microaggressions group tweeted a screenshot of the assignment and the names of her group’s members, which included Artan. None of these students responded to a request for comment,” Reason reports.

Breitbart News contacted Todd Suddeth, Ph.D, executive director of Ohio State University’s Office of Student Life Multicultural Center via phone and email to confirm or deny this report, but did not receive a response.

According to the course description:

At the conclusion of the course, students will be able to:

  • Identify micro-aggressions within their daily lives and within society as a whole.

  • Define power, privilege, value systems and difference and be able to identify their different forms.

  • Recognize the commonalities and differences that exist among people and cultures and how these factors influence their relationship with others.

  • Demonstrate a personal ethic geared towards civic responsibility.

  • Identify ways in which they can challenge or address systems of power and privilege.

  • Demonstrate an appreciation for other points of view and other cultures.

  • Recognize the influence of culture on communication and be willing to address any difference of one’s own culture and communication style.

  • Use observation, conflict management, dialogue, and active listening as a means of understanding and engaging with others.

  • Discuss how they will be socially just global citizenship as part of their lifelong learning.

“Classes meet twice a week and aim to expand self-awareness and develop valuable dialogue skills. Receive credit for the Leadership Minor and/or the Social Diversity in the U.S. GE while examining and discussing issues and experiences relevant to Ohio State and society,” according to the course description.

According to the syllabus, the course is for three undergraduate credits offered through The Ohio State University College of Education and Human Ecology, Department of Educational Studies.

Amy Barnes, Ed.D. is the course coordinator. Antonio Duran and Todd Suddeth, Ph.D., executive director of the Multicultural Center, are also listed as instructors in the syllabus.

Breitbart News contacted Barnes and Duran to confirm or deny that Artan was enrolled in the course, as well, as Suddeth, but received no response from any of the three instructors.

“40+ Years of Social Justice Activism at Ohio State University” is the headline at the Multicultural Center’s web page that describes its history.


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