In response to long standing issues of systemic racism and social inequities in our nation, IUPUC has enhanced our commitment to issues of diversity, equity and inclusion. Last year, together with our partners at the Columbus Education Coalition, the Eco Attainment Network, and Ivy Tech, we began our work with the National Equity Project, and continue our commitment to the values it promotes: “the National Equity Project is a leadership and organizational development group committed to increasing leadership capacities in order to eliminate racialized outcomes and achieve thriving, self-determining, and educated communities” NAP explains: “Educational equity means that each individual receives what they need to develop to their full academic and social potential…working towards equity in institutions of learning involves, ensuring equally high outcomes for all participants in our educational system; removing the predictability of success or failures that currently correlates with any social or cultural factor; interrupting inequitable practices, examining biases, and creating inclusive multicultural educational environments for adults and children; and discovering and cultivating the unique gifts, talents, and interests that every human possesses.”
During academic Year 2021-22, we incorporated DEI in our promotion and tenure rubric, acknowledging DEI as important work toward tenure and promotion; we assembled an Anti-Racism Policies/Practices Sub Committee at IUPUC to liaise with the Anti-Racism Policies/Practices Committee and IUPUI Chancellor’s Diversity Cabinet. Additionally, we are continuing work with the EcO Attainment (of the Community Education Coalition) to support and increase educational access to the Latinx population. We are working to enhance the DEI content in the First Year Seminar course. Our campus Diversity Council is building a working relationship and plan with the local chapter of the NAACP, in an effort to recruit African American students in Bartholomew County, as well as continuing work with the Human Rights Commission of Columbus, IN, and (prior to the pandemic), offered small group diversity circles to address diversity needs within our community, through direct conversations with community members. Concurrently, faculty have worked with community partners to incorporate DEI service-learning initiatives in their classes, and faculty at IUPUC formed an Anti-Racist Task Force.