Fall Update on Diversity Efforts on Campus

To: UCSC Faculty, Staff, and Students

From: Campus Diversity Officers Herbie Lee and Ashish Sahni

Over the past months, we noted, through our campus messages, some of the changes on campus that are related to diversity and inclusion at UCSC. However, given the questions we have received regarding the changes, we would like to pull the pieces together and offer you a more holistic view of what these changes mean.

  • In July 2010, UCSC’s Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action (EEO/AA) Office was officially renamed the Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. While still retaining all of the EEO/AA compliance responsibilities, the office also collaborates with units, departments and student groups across campus on events and initiatives that promote diversity and inclusion. Learn more about the new office at: http://diversity.ucsc.edu.

Also in July 2010, The Diversity Advisory Committee (DAC), which was formed in the summer of 2009 to advise Chancellor Blumenthal on diversity-related issues at UCSC, was restructured into UCSC’s Advisory Council on Campus Climate, Culture and Inclusion (ACCCCI). A little background: 

o   President Yudof formed a systemwide Advisory Council on Campus Climate, Culture and Inclusion and asked each campus Chancellor to form a parallel council, which the Chancellor would chair.

o   Chancellor Blumenthal decided to restructure DAC to meet the charges of ACCCCI.

o   The primary responsibilities of ACCCCI include evaluating the progress of UCSC in creating conditions of climate, culture, and inclusion that best support the mission of the University and provide equal opportunities to all UCSC students, faculty and staff. The membership of the advisory council is broad in its representation—in addition to students, staff and faculty, there are also community members and alumni serving on the council.

UCSC’s ACCCCI met for the first time on September 28th. During the meeting, an overview of current campus demographics was presented, followed by a brief discussion on the Principles of Community. There were also brief presentations on selected recent campus diversity- and inclusion-related initiatives. The council has agreed to form four subcommittees as it moves forward in its work: students (undergraduate and graduate), staff, faculty and climate metrics. The subcommittees’ charge includes looking at ways to assess campus climate and recommending programs and initiatives that promote diversity and inclusion on campus.

The next quarterly full council meeting will be on January 11, 2011. Click here for more information about the UCSC advisory council and its membership roster.

We hope this gives you a clear overview of the recent changes in our office, please feel free to send us your questions and comments at: diversity@ucsc.edu.

 Events and News

The opportunities to collaborate with students, staff and faculty are of utmost importance to our office’s work around diversity and inclusion. These collaborations come in various forms and sizes, and we would like to share a couple of these efforts with you.

  • Staff in the Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion were delighted to introduce the office during the first annual Department Chairs Bootcamp on September 16th, which was organized by the Academic Personnel Office. The goal of the Bootcamp was to give incoming Department Chairs tips and tools for serving in their new roles. Resources on topics such as conflict resolution, disability awareness, and classroom climate were presented in an effort to promote an inclusive environment within the academic departments.
On October 19th, we held our first student conversation at Cowell College (a big thank you to Provost Faye Crosby and ACPC Karen Hilker). This was a great opportunity for us, your Campus Diversity Officers, to hear and respond to students’ concerns and suggestions, and to provide students with information about what is happening on campus. We plan to hold more student conversations throughout the academic year, so keep a look out for the next one! 

We are excited that response to the Diversity and Inclusion Certificate Program has been very positive and the core courses filled quickly. The Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is no longer able to accept participants for the 2010-2011 Program. However, interested staff employees are encouraged to sign up for the 2011-2012 Program by contacting Joy Lei at jllei@ucsc.edu. Please click here for information regarding the Program and the list of elective courses for this year.

Lastly, we welcome your comments, suggestions, and feedback. We also encourage you to let us know about any diversity-related events and initiatives we can publicize in future email communication. Just send a note to diversity@ucsc.edu.