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Diversity Goal

Develop and sustain a dynamic inclusive campus community that actively and visibly supports and educates for social justice, diversity, and human rights. Continuously shape and support this diverse campus community of students, faculty, staff, and alumni through evaluation, recruitment, mentoring, and retention efforts.


Strategy A: Sustain a Commitment to Diversity. Lead a multi-faceted, cross-divisional, action-oriented 7-year plan to demonstrate commitment and resource allocation. Explore reconstituting the University Council on Diversity so that it represents all campus constituencies and includes members who have the authority to implement the strategies and initiatives outlined. Annually, each Cabinet member will report on diversity contributions, initiatives, and progress.  This report will be made available to the campus community and presented to the Board of Trustees Diversity Committee. Annual reports will be compiled to demonstrate commitment and growth.

III.A1:  Students, faculty, and staff will embrace the expanded definition of diversity to include gender, race, ethnicity, country of origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, ability, socio-economic status, and religion.[1] The University community will engage in discussions about the intersection of identities and the impact on the campus experience. 

III.A2:  The University will articulate a strong institutional statement of core values related to diversity that is consistent in the admissions and orientation processes, speaker series, and all publications (print and web-based). These core values include (but are not limited to) multicultural awareness, appreciation, respect, dignity, individuality, and inclusivity.

Outcome: The visual image of the University through print, video and web publications will reflect campus diversity.

Outcome: Campus speakers, panelists, and performers will reflect diversity such that the campus intellectual environment is inclusive of a variety of perspectives.

Outcome: Admissions, orientation, convocations, and other campus-wide events will incorporate message related to an inclusive, welcoming environment. 

III.A3:  Proposed Organizational Structure:

University Council on Diversity (re-configured membership to reflect committee chairs, senior-level decision makers, and students).  Charge is to coordinate all diversity efforts, create an annual “diversity report card”, review institutional messages/identity related to diversity, and monitor progress on enrollment and hiring practices.

            Educating for Diversity

    • Faculty Committee on Diversity (FCD). The FCD is charged with identifying and communicating strategies for infusing diversity into the curriculum and classroom, in order to create a more inclusive experience for all students and to prepare them for life in a global society.  The focus of the FCD is on discovering and sharing related curricular resources, areas for collaboration, faculty development opportunities and assessment strategies.  The FCD is an appointive committee of five faculty and elects its chair annually.  Regular reporting at faculty meetings will be expected.
    • Co-Curricular Advisory Committee. Focus is on co-curricular initiatives.  Membership includes Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, International Programs, Chaplain, Safe Zone/LBGT, Engaging Diversity director, women’s council, students (Senate awareness commissioner, athletics, Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and Office of Residential Life.
    • Multicultural Fluency Committee. Focus is on faculty and staff development of knowledge, skills and abilities for educating and serving a diverse community.  Membership includes Human Resources, Staff Council, CUPP, representatives from each division, and students.  Co-chairs will be selected by Staff Council and CUPP.

            Creating an Inclusive Environment

    • Campus Climate Assessment Committee. Charge is to assess the campus climate for target populations.  Membership includes students, faculty, and staff.  Chaired by the Assistant Vice President for Institutional Research, Planning and Evaluation.
    • Policy and Protocol Review Committee. Charge is to review policy and reporting regarding incidents related to diversity and intolerance (including Title IX, Bias Incident, etc.). Members include Security, Provost, Human Resources, Dean of Students, Title IX Coordinator, and a representative from CUPP.
    • Diversity Leadership Team. Leadership group consisting of the leaders of all diversity-related RSOs, Senate, athletics, Greek life, multicultural educators, engaging diversity and RHA. This team of students helps the Dean of Students keep her finger on the pulse of campus diversity issues and is available to other committees for feedback.

Outcome: The Office of Multicultural Student Affairs and International Programs (as the two specific offices that focus on underrepresented populations) will conduct an external assessment. Report recommendations will be considered and implemented, as appropriate.

Outcome: CUPP will explore methods to ensure that diversity-related committee work is reflected in the time commitments of faculty.

III.A4:  The University will annually review progress reports and campus research studies regarding climate, recruitment and retention and will demonstrate responsiveness through action planning.

Strategy B: Educating for Diversity and Social Justice

III.B1:   Students will engage in classroom and out-of-class discussion about diversity and social justice topics.

Outcome: The Center for Human Rights and Social Justice will be fully integrated into the life of the University.

Outcome:  University-wide intellectual themes will demonstrate a commitment to diversity and social justice to enhance education for all students, faculty and staff and showcase a strong, intellectually-vibrant community.

Outcome: Undergraduate and faculty research that promote a better understanding of diversity, social justice, diverse constituencies, and/or climate will be encouraged, promoted, and funded.

Outcome: Course development grants to allow faculty to develop courses related to contemporary social justice and diversity should be considered.

Outcome: A speaker’s fund will be cultivated that funds speakers from diverse backgrounds and/or speakers addressing issues of diversity and social justice.

Outcome: Course clusters that emphasize social justice will be explored.

III.B2:   A review of the US Diversity flag and the Global Diversity flag for learning outcomes assessment and the ability to address contemporary diversity topics should be considered. 

III.B3:   Students will understand their own privilege and oppression.

Outcome: Campus peer educators (resident advisors, multi-faith ambassadors, multi-cultural educators, peer tutors, writing tutors, etc.) will feel confident in their ability to communicate with, mentor, and serve our diverse student body. Furthermore, they will have a strong understanding of their own identity in order to best facilitate dialogue with others.

Strategy C: Develop and Sustain an Inclusive Campus Climate

III.C1:   Faculty and staff will feel confident in their ability to teach, advise, mentor, serve, and communicate with our diverse student body. They will demonstrate multicultural awareness, appreciation and understanding of the experiences of underrepresented groups and work to ensure a high quality experience for all students.

Outcome: The Multicultural Fluency Committee will sponsor regular professional development opportunities for faculty, staff and administrators.

III.C2:   Underrepresented students will experience a positive campus climate.

Outcome: International students will have the necessary supports to transition and thrive on campus, in Illinois and the United States.

Outcome: Recommendations from the LGBT+ campus climate study will be considered and prioritized for implementation.

III.C3:   The University will be responsive to acts of intolerance by establishing visible reporting processes, thorough investigative procedures, education and accountability.

Outcome: The National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) and the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) College Senior Survey (CSS) will be used to study the experiences of students from different economic, social and racial/ethnic backgrounds. Data to be considered include items that review climate issues.

III.C4:   Campus diversity climate will be regularly monitored, studied and reviewed for inclusivity and high quality experiences for all students.

Outcome: The HERI Diverse Learning Environments Survey will be conducted to identify a baseline for understanding our campus climate.  An action plan will be developed to reinforce strengths and address concerns.  Ideally, the study would be conducted again in 2020 to measure the impact of efforts during this strategic plan cycle.

Strategy D: Recruit and Retain a Diverse Student Body

III.D1:  Enrollment Management will develop appropriate benchmarks for evaluating our student recruitment efforts, especially in light of new enrollment strategies.

Outcome: Enrollment levels of underrepresented students will be closely monitored to better understand the impact of new enrollment strategies on the student body.

III.D2:  Underrepresented students will experience a positive campus climate, including appropriate support services, policies, and genuine commitment to their success.

Outcome: Enrollment Management will study international student recruitment and retention so we can best support this growing population. International students will retain at equal or better levels than domestic students. An action plan will be created from this study.

Outcome: Enrollment Management will conduct a thorough study of student attrition, with specific attention to underrepresented students (race/ethnicity, socio-economic status, first generation, specifically, but not limited). Underrepresented students will retain at equal or better levels than majority students.

Outcome: In comparison to majority students, underrepresented students will demonstrate equal or better levels of engagement, mentoring and satisfaction on the NSSE and HERI CSS conducted by Office of Institutional Research and Planning.

Outcome: Essential University services (specifically Counseling and Consultation Services, the Writing Center, Arnold Health Services, Hart Career Center and others) will demonstrate accessibility by reporting demographic usage by students.

Outcome: The University will continue to address student socio-economic concerns through financial aid support, an increase in endowed scholarships, and the new Promise scholarships.

Outcome: The University will continue to increase diversity of faculty and staff, as a critical component of retaining underrepresented students.

Strategy E: Recruit and Retain a Diverse Faculty and Staff

III.E1:   Human Resources, Staff Council and Academic Affairs will develop clear benchmarks to measure our successes for recruiting and retaining a diverse faculty and staff.

Outcome: The annual report that is provided regarding diversity progress will demonstrate progress relative to these benchmarks.

Outcome: Data will be provided that demonstrate success in both diversifying the pool of applicants for positions, the success of candidates in receiving interviews, and ultimately hiring decisions.

Outcome: Diversity of staff at various levels of responsibility will be reviewed to ensure that campus leadership reflects diversity.

III.E2:   Campus hiring authorities will understand the value of hiring for diversity and will feel confident in their ability to recruit and retain a diverse staff.

Outcome: Human Resources and Academic Affairs will develop clear hiring guidelines for faculty and staff that communicate a strong desire to hire for diversity. Guidelines will be distributed to hiring authorities every time positions are approved.

Outcome: Human Resources and Academic Affairs will develop professional development for hiring authorities regarding recruiting for diversity.

Outcome: All new staff and faculty will receive educational information about the campus commitment to diversity and how they contribute to an inclusive environment.

III.E3:   Faculty and staff from underrepresented groups will experience quality mentoring and support throughout their careers.

Outcome: In comparison to majority faculty (white and/or male), underrepresented faculty will demonstrate equal or better levels of satisfaction with their employment experience.

Outcome: HERI Faculty Survey results will demonstrate a comparable work load experience (research/writing, creative performance, and administrative work) across faculty and fewer than 5% of underrepresented faculty will report subtle discrimination as a source of stress.

Outcome: Women, International, and MALANA faculty by race are proportionally represented in the ranks of the faculty, in promotion and tenure decisions, in grant application and award support, and in nomination and selection for endowed professorships.

Outcome: A comparable survey to the HERI Faculty Survey should be considered (or developed) and conducted by the University to best assess the employment experience of underrepresented staff.

Outcome: Underrepresented employees are proportionally represented in internal promotions or position advancements.

Outcome: Underrepresented staff will experience mentoring support through newly developed mentoring programs and teams.

Strategy F: Involving Constituencies that Represent Diverse Groups       

III.F1:   All alumni from underrepresented groups will continue a strong affinity with IWU through alumni office activities, the Alumni Board, and specialized alumni affinity groups.

Outcome: The Minority Alumni Network should consider how to be inclusive of a variety of ethnicities in their programming.

Outcome: The Pride Alumni Network will explore a collaborative Pride Summit for students, faculty and staff.

Outcome: The Women’s Council will continue to develop into a support and advocacy group for women alumni, students, faculty and staff.

III.F2:   Students from underrepresented groups and registered student organizations with advocacy missions will develop strong partnerships with successful alumni for education, awareness, networking and support.

[1] Note: The term “underrepresented” will be used in this document to represent Multi Racial, African American, Asian American, Latino/a, and Native American (MALANA) people, International people, LGBT+ people, low socio-economic status students, first-generation students, people with disabilities and people from non-Christian faith backgrounds.  For the purpose of climate and inclusion, we also include women, although women are often the numerical majority.