OLYMPIA, Wash. - South Puget Sound Community College says it was a mistake for an employee group to invite only people of color to a diversity "happy hour."
The group that sent out the email last week apologized the next day and canceled the event, said Kellie Purce Braseth, dean of college relations.
The college believes the best way to celebrate and discuss diversity is to include everyone, Braseth told KING5.
"If you want to come you should be able to come; that just makes a richer conversation," she said.
The invitation to all 300 staffers said the "Staff, Faculty and Administrators of Color" encouraged employees to reply to the invitation to find out the confidential date and time of what was being called a "happy hour" to "build support and community" for people of color.
The invite made it clear white people were not welcome.
"If you want to create space for white folks to meet and work on racism, white supremacy, and white privilege to better our campus community and yourselves, please feel free to do just that," the email read.
Karama Blackhorn, program coordinator for the school's Diversity and Equity Center, helped write the invitation.
It could have been worded differently, but she maintains the staff members of color would have a more honest discussion about race without white employees.
Explicitly talking about race "can be a really difficult conversation for a lot of people," Blackhorn said.
You may also like...
Underwater Secret: Hidden caves beneath Weeki Wachee
Rollercoaster Rescue: 16 stranded after ride malfunction
Car Crash tragedy: USF students killed in interstate wrong-way crash
Hungry Sinkhole: Hole opens beneath Corvette museum, swallows 8 cars
Be my McValentine: Romantic reservations at McDonald's
Card Game Murder: Man sentenced for Magic: The Gathering killing
Treason? Secret Service visits candidate who says Obama should hang
Sasquatch on Tour: "Dead Bigfoot" on display in Texas
Here kitty, kitty: Lion escapes enclosure at Pasco sanctuary
#ShortYellows: Florida quietly shortened yellow lights
Kittens shot: Officer shoots kittens in front of children
Popular photo galleries:
Faces of Meth: Devastating before and after photos of meth abusers
Trayvon Martin Shooting: Trayvon Martin crime scene photos and George Zimmerman injury photos
Hooters Winners: Winners of the 2013 Hooters swimsuit pageant
Rejected: Funny Florida license plates rejected by the DMV ***warning graphic***
Deadly sinkhole: Home collapses, man dies in giant sinkhole
Florida Sex Offenders: Look up sex offenders in any Florida neighborhood here
Restaurant Inspections: Look up inspection reports for any Florida restaurant here