We describe ourselves as four centers and a school: the American Indian Resource Center, the Black Cultural Center, the Center for Ethnic Student Affairs, the LGBT Resource Center and the School for Cultural and Social Transformation. And when it comes to diversity, equity and inclusion, we consider ourselves the architects and engineers of social justice work on our campus.
Here’s our approach and how we align with the University’s Four Strategic Goals:
Design Framework for Intersectional Inquiry
• The School for Cultural and Social Transformation (Transform) explores intersectionality through interdisciplinary research in Ethnic Studies, Gender Studies, and Disability Studies.
• We forge vanguard studies of shifting sexualities, changing genders, dynamic immigrations, disability politics, intersectional identity, and emergent struggles against all bigoted thought and action.
• Representation is important, that’s why our diversity Faculty Hiring Initiative (2014-2017) aimed to and did increase our faculty diversity across campus.
• Through community-engaged classrooms and research opportunities, Transform students have the ability to put new knowledge into practice.
Build Holistic Ecosystems
• From programming and academic advising to outreach and retention efforts, our highly skilled and passionate staff seek holistically to support our students – every step of the way.
• Student groups work to build a network of support and engagement to enhance their campus life experience.
• Community is at the center of our work. Holistic learning communities such as Diversity Scholars and Gender Justice scholars combine services with academic curriculum that help promote knowledge communities.
Align Optics with Reality
• Our team of communicators ‘keep it real’ while amplifying messages of diversity.
• Bias and racist incidents are a safety issue and our strong relationships across campus promote immediate responses from all angles.
• Student voices are vital for change. We listen to them in order to shape recruitment, representation, funding and hiring.
Construct Spaces of Belonging
• The new CESA student group space and the Transform student lounge are spaces for student groups to come together, plan events, study, and offer support to one another.
• We are visiting every dean, department chair, and administrative team to require accountability by attaching budgetary requests to specific diversity action plans.