Metropolitan State University of Denver’s Faculty Senate in December approved the new Ethnic Studies and Social Justice special designation, which will replace the existing Multicultural special designation. This is a graduation requirement that all MSU Denver students have to meet. The University catalog now lists the ESSJ requirement information, effective for the fall semester 

Key takeaways 

  • It is not retroactive. Students on the 2023-24 and forward catalogs will see the requirement as Ethnic Studies and Social Justice. Students on prior catalogs (2022-23 and prior) will see the requirement remain listed as Multicultural in Degree Works; however, the courses they are seeking will now be listed as ESSJ courses in the catalog. 
  • All courses that held the Multicultural designation were granted the ESSJ designation as well in Banner. This means that all courses have both designations and can meet either requirement for students. A three-year course rotation was created that will provide the opportunity for departments to update course components to align with the new ESSJ designation and officially redesignate a course or courses. Redesignation lasts for seven years. Courses that remain designated will keep both the ESSJ and MC designations for the next several years so they can continue to meet all students’ needs regardless of their catalog year.  
  • Faculty members, advisors and staff members who are student-facing: Please inform students of this change. While the catalog includes a statement about the change, it is anticipated that students may be confused about the change in the requirement. Please inform them that the ESSJ is taking the place of the MC designation and includes the new name, description and learning objectives.   
  • Any transfer-course questions related to this change can be directed to Camden Farmer, senior associate registrar, director of Transfer Partnerships. 
  • Faculty and staff members can find more information, including a detailed implementation plan and course-rotation lists, on the Curriculum SharePoint site 

Contact for questions

Devon Wright, Ph.D., chair of the ESSJ Curriculum Review Committee 

Tonia Schneider, curriculum and reporting specialist