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2020-2021 Campuswide Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiatives 


College of Business Administration (CBA)

Speaker ideas: Nikita Murray (CMU Director of Diversity Education), Scott Page (UofM, diversity in complex systems), Lee Thomas (Detroit journalist, diversity activist), Huda Essa (Cultural Competency Consultant), Paula Stone Williams (transgender woman CEO). Topics of breakout sessions could include: unconscious bias training, international student inclusiveness, gender identity info and support, and/or disability inclusion in class and online.

As indicated in our 2020 AACSB Fifth Year Maintenance Report, the CBA’s strategic initiatives include hiring an Assistant Director of Diversity and Inclusion. This initiative is pending, due to the current university-wide hiring freeze.

This initiative is pending, due to the current university-wide hiring freeze. First, we will obtain market analysis data from FPS and CBA demographic data for discussion and consultation in all hiring decisions. Then we will target minority publications/Phd project for advertising open positions

In FY19/20, we developed and communicated a policy for use and access to the new comfort room in Grawn Hall. In the meantime, CMU has developed additional criteria for this type of space, beyond what is currently available. The following initiative would bring our personal care room up to the ‘ideal’ standards for a personal care room/quality of life space.

The following initiative is intended to support ENT students in general, as well as students in all majors who are first generation, students of color, and/or low-income.

The following initiative would better communicate the benefits of a business degree to these students with the intent to draw some undecided students to our college.

College of Education and Human Services (CEHS)

This was a part of our 2019-2020 initiatives but we were unable to accomplish this last year. As we develop initiatives for the coming years we expect that this College Climate review will form the basis of our planning, rather than our committee discussions and interests, as is currently the case. The College Climate Review will reach across departments and units in the college, while the use of the information for planning will be more restricted to our college committee.

Continue work in establishing at least one universally designed restroom (including gender neutral and accessible) in each of the CEHS buildings (Wightman, Finch, and EHS Building). This will be a multi-year project because it includes multiple units across campus and has financial implication for the college. This year, we would like to work to get one of the buildings onto a calendar for upcoming renovation work.

Focus on assessing what support international faculty feel from the college and what areas of support we might enhance or provide. Anecdotal reports range from challenges acclimating to the community, interpersonal challenges with colleagues, and lack of familiarity with reappointment, tenure and promotion expectations and practices in US higher education settings.

College of Health Professions (CHP)

Examine data as it relates to equity/inequity in salary and promotion opportunities among staff/faculty (i.e., examining differences across disciplines at department level and across different gender, age group, races, disability status, adjusted for years of experience, educational accomplishments and leadership positions). Provide a learning module for faculty, staff and students on how to negotiate a contract.

Provide faculty with diversity education through faculty development opportunities (secure recognized authority speaker targeting Health Professions and Diversity). It is hoped that the CHP can collaborate with interested college partners for sharing ideas/topics/costs.

Secure a nationally recognized researcher to present/speak about healthcare disparities. This would be an event that would be targeted to the CMU community (faculty, staff, students) and the greater Mount Pleasant community. It is hoped that the CHP can collaborate with interested college partners for sharing ideas/topics/costs. It may be that a grant will be submitted for sharing costs of speakers.

Develop a plan for CHP faculty, staff and students to complete the updated CMU LawRoom Training for Disability Accommodations.

Implement plan for greater inclusion of off-campus learners in on-campus activities and vice-versa (on-campus students interacting from off-campus health professionals) to improve learning, professional networking and collaboration. (a continuation of the data obtained from AY 19/20 Inclusion Initiative)

College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences (CLASS)

CLASS will host an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer who will work with social work students to survey and form focus groups with BIPOC students to identify success barriers and then develop programs to take down those barriers. The survey and focus group findings will be used to help CLASS focus efforts to meet needs in the 2020-2021 academic year and will be shared with the larger CMU community.

As part of the Critical Engagements series, this year focusing on “What Does it Mean to be Human?” CLASS will bring to campus, albeit it virtually, an event focused on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women in partnership with CMU Native American Programs. While we had a program planned, COVID collapsed that, so we are coming up with a new plan right now.

CLASS will form a DEI Faculty learning community as an outgrowth of a CLASS COVID and Equity Panel held in August with a focus on equity. During this town hall members of the college expressed a strong desire to focus on anti-racism in classrooms and co-curricular work.

College of Science & Engineering (CSE)

One of the side goals of the CSE 2019-2020 efforts was to get more people from CSE involved in the DEI discussion. The intent was to start with the DAC and chair for 2019-2020. We made the decision to create a standing committee starting in the spring semester. The committee is chaired by David Patton and has at least one member from all nine departments. The committee endorsed initiative #2 above, and will be responsible for developing new initiatives going forward. The committee will support current initiatives and develop new initiatives to help CSE to continually improve in diversity, equity, and inclusion for our students, faculty and staff.

This project will attempt to improve faculty understanding of implicit bias and how it can influence hiring decisions. Dr. Veronica Barone will be leading the project. Volunteers from all nine CSE departments have agreed to participate. All of the departments will recognize the role of implicit bias in hiring decisions, learn from that understanding, and improve the hiring process at CMU so that we are more successful in recruiting a diverse faculty.

Members of the ADVANCE team will document and analyze institutional data to understand the barriers to success for STEM women faculty at CMU. Furthermore, the project will analyze how these barriers are similar or different depending on the academic department, race/ethnicity, and/or world region of origin. The project team will visit other ADVANCE institutions to learn about their success and struggles with similar issues and will invite expert speakers to come to CMU.



By forming the committee that is representative of virtually every department within Advancement, we are able to get feedback on where we can improve, learn and grow in our efforts to be more diverse, equitable and inclusive.

  • The subcommittee will be able to provide a system of accurate information sharing to Advancement as a whole and the committee are looked to for resources around DEI efforts within Advancement.
  • The subcommittee will work with experts on our campus to evaluate our hiring practices to ensure that they are in line with DEI best practices and revamp them if they are not.
  • The subcommittee will work with experts on our campus to determine accessibility and general inclusivity in the CAH and determine clear action steps to improve should we need them.
  • Addressing our hiring practices and how we recruit diverse talent within our staff and our volunteers will allow for our community to see representation that is currently lacking, creating a space where people's opinions are brought to the table.

    Accessibility of the building that the majority of our staff work in to ensure a welcoming, inclusive, and working environment.

    Engage alumni and donors in new and meaningful ways.


    Continue Chip Chats with the intent to create a safe space for student-athletes and employees to engage in facilitated intentional conversations regarding various diversity, equity & inclusion topics. This will be collaborative with the entire CMU community.

    Employee recruitment efforts will include member(s) of and/or input by the Athletics DE&I Council to help ensure we are being open-minded in our recruitment efforts and trying our very best to further diversify our staff (and retain them).

    Streamlining efforts to be more effective with our programing and communication throughout the department, so employees and student-athletes know their participation is valued & important without them having to engage in double the activities.

    MASS / CID

    Including students from a range of different social and ethnic backgrounds and of different genders, sexual orientations, etc. as actors for video shoots.

    Create equal access to opportunities for engagement and resources to attend topic-related conferences for people who might otherwise be excluded or marginalized.

    Provide fair and equitable opportunities for student representation, engagement and participation in transformative dialogue.

    Office of Global Engagement

    We plan to hire a student assistant to work on programming, outreach, and marketing toward underrepresented populations in study abroad participation. We want to ensure that underrepresented students have equal access to study abroad, which may translate to promoting scholarships, connecting with peers who have gone abroad previously, providing guidance on applying for a passport, traveling overseas, etc., providing resources that address specific concerns that minority students may have about traveling abroad, etc. We plan to purchase resources from Diversity Abroad, which is a nationally-recognized association that supports participation of underrepresented students in education abroad. These resources help advisors and students discuss potential concerns and strategies to confront issues that may exist in a particular host country (climate toward minority students or LGBTQ community, lack of accessibility, etc.)

    Office of Research and Graduate Studies (ORGS)

    Require each ORGS team member to attend at least one diversity, equity, and/or inclusion training/event during the 2020-2021 fiscal year. Members of the ORGS team will gain a better understanding of, and best practices for, working with people across differences. In addition, it will give the team insight into important matters involving both the university and the surrounding community.

    Work to increase representation and access to the arts/creative endeavors at the Student Research and Creative Endeavors Exhibition (SRCEE), including finding ways to accommodate non-traditional presentations. Though there is representation of the arts/creative endeavors at SRCEE, the event is mostly populated by what is thought of as traditional research projects. We hope to encourage students from the arts/creative endeavors to participate focusing more on the recruitment of those students, as well as investigate ways to accommodate non-traditional presentations (music, dance, etc.).

    The Office of Lab and Field Safety (OLFS) will work to integrate the new guidance document for accommodating students in labs into the review process for Student Disability Services (SDS) accommodations. With this initiative, we hope to provide support for safe participation in laboratory settings, while also meeting Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. The anticipated outcome is that collaboration between SDS, faculty, and OLFS will ensure safe, compliant, and inclusive lab accommodations.

    Office of Information Technology

    Encourage members of the department to attend one of the cultural activities on campus – soup and substance, dialogue across differences, shared governance gathering, etc. as examples. Encourage members to share thoughts and information regarding DEI on the OIT Teams DEI Channel. The OIT DEI Committee will promote events using our OIT Teams DEI Channel and try to get feedback from individuals that attend. This information will help inform the following years initiatives.

    Require Bias awareness for OIT employees– Members of the OIT team will participate in or a similar tool - CMU’s bias awareness assessment. This will be a first step to raise individual awareness to the importance of and need for diversity training. All OIT employees will need to dedicate estimated 15 time per employee during the fiscal year.

    Develop and support a newly formed OIT DEI Committee (membership consists of Angelica Gomez (co-chair), Ben Andera (co-chair), Justin Barnaby, Paul Zielinski, Duane Barclay, and Ashley Arnett). Employees will need a few hours a month to dedicate to the newly formed committee.

    President's Division

    Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion discussions, workshops, and training for cabinet members and senior officers advised and coordinated through the Office for Institutional Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and the Office of Diversity Education.

    Begin a series of Intergroup Dialogue experiences (six three-hour sessions for each balanced group of twelve individuals) for faculty and staff members.

    Convene a committee including representatives from various President’s division units including OCRIE, the Ombuds, ODE, OIDEI about Restorative/Transformative Justice practices and how to implement a service for community restoration/transformation after or in conjunction with or supplemental to existing disciplinary and harassment complaint procedures as a means of promoting mutual healing from “incidents.” This initiative also can help create a safe space for creating lasting understanding of harm caused without necessarily being punitive.

    Develop video resources and means of access to provide specific support for our students of color, first generation students, and low-income students, including those from rural backgrounds as well as make such tools available to advisors and support personnel across campus.

    University Communications

    Partner with existing groups to advance diversity and inclusion on our campus. – Expanding this from last year to include how we can help drive audiences for critical DEI events.

    Require each member of the UComm team to attend at least one diversity/equity/inclusion-focused training or activity each semester. We have maintained the goal of this initiative from last year. Seek specific training for entire staff on implicit bias and appropriate representation in communication.

    Continue to intentionally recruit a diverse workforce, including staff and interns.

    University Library

    Continue working with CARRS to conduct and analyze several student focus groups per semester to understand students’ level of satisfaction and experiences with the libraries. Apply findings to enhance library processes and policies. We hope to conduct 2-3 focus groups during fall 2020 and spring 2021 with 4-6 of these student subgroups: Native American students, Asian American students, Latinx students, International students, Students with Disabilities, LGTBQ+ students, First Generation students, and Transfer students.

    80% of library employees will participate in DEI training, events, workshops, etc. between July 2020 and June 2021. We will develop a method of collecting data about employee DEI training, events, workshops, etc. by the end of June 2021.

    Host a human library event during fall semester 2020 or spring semester 2021. A human library is a place where real people are on loan to borrowers. A human library event fosters positive conversations and a safe place to ask and answer difficult questions.

    Provost Office/Academic Division

    Initiative is directly related to supporting international student success, which should result in greater recruitment and retention. Supports international student onboarding and initial integration to campus, including introductions to important campus resources. By making customized videos, we can ensure that international students receive the information in a way that is most useful to them and creates a welcoming atmosphere that encourages them to use the resources.
    This year, we are working with Contracting and Purchasing to officially select our vendor for the video projection. We had previously identified a preferred vendor and began developing a project vision but when I got in touch with Contracting, they let me know that a bidding process was required. I am awaiting the final bid submissions. We have moved forward developing scripts for three videos.

    We would like to hire a student to help us increase diversity and inclusion among global engagement programs. Specifically, they would be tasked to work on programming, outreach, and marketing toward underrepresented populations in study abroad participation, and programming and outreach that brings together international students with domestic students. This is something that is still very important to our office, even with the current circumstances.

    The committee has been formed, but we have not met yet. The goal of the committee is to come up with activities that will advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

    University Recreation

    As evidence from the Facility Access study, the study demonstrated that University Recreation facilities have the capacity to support and serve inclusive recreation programs. The goals of this program plan would include:

  • Creation of programs that are prioritized from the Inclusive Recreation Research survey;
  • Collaborate with Recreation Parks and Leisure Services, Physical Education and Sports, Student Disabilities Services, Special Olympics – Michigan; Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and the Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) Services;
  • Integrate with current and existing University Recreation and community programs such as: Esports, Community Days, Unified Sports, Specials Events and Aquatics, Fitness/Wellness and Informal programming.