The SILS Diversity Committee met on January 16th with several items on the table:
- Updated the existing diversity statement with small revisions to be more inclusive and politically correct.
- Discussed ways that faculty can and should be embedding diversity into their curriculum, such as making sure to assigned readings are written by diverse peoples, including the diversity statement on syllabi, and reaching out to diverse speakers when inviting guests into the classroom. In general, faculty should be aware of who they are making visible to their students.
- Discussed ways to promote the diversity certificate to SILS students. One method may be to email students who have started the certificate in order to encourage them to complete it. Another strategy is to build a sense of community by holding 2-3 informal student gatherings during the semester. The committee also discussed adding preferred pronouns to the diversity certificate application, and perhaps update the wording on the certificate itself.
- Began discussion on ways to retain diverse faculty and educate students, faculty and staff on the difficulties of being a minority in the academic environment. It is more difficult to get published if you have an ‘ethnic’ name, and faculty of color, especially women tend to get unbalanced reviews that on the lower end on student evaluations.