Faculty, students, and staff, including President Sylvia Burwell, share how AU is beginning to move forward together toward achieving inclusive excellence goals.
While there has been progress across all of the goals, early efforts have focused on goals #1 and 2, which we believe will be the foundation for achieving our other goals.
Objective: Members of the AU community will demonstrate cultural competency by learning key concepts that will reduce bias and foster diversity, equity, and inclusion, and equip them to lead change in a complex world.
The president's cabinet and deans have all completed intercultural competence assessment and are engaged in ongoing learning.
500+ Newly Trained Faculty
Through a new Faculty Development Leadership Cohort (FDLC) on Diversity and Inclusion, 14 faculty members completed training in inclusive teaching practices, and then trained an additional 500 more faculty.
89% of Incoming First-year Students
Fall 2018 incoming first year students at Eagle Summit participated in an intercultural engagement session.
Objective: We will develop a campus climate and culture where all community members feel safe, experience a sense of belonging and satisfaction—and their overall well-being is supported through respectful, authentic, and engaged relationships with each other.
In order to broadly represent the AU community, the President’s Council on Diversity and Inclusion adopted a tri-chair structure to bring faculty, staff, and administration into its leadership. There’s also an alumni representative among the new members, and its new Student Advisory Council will be announced in mid-September.
Six inclusive-excellence projects were funded in spring 2018, ranging from staff trainings to alumni collaborations.
2 New Spaces on Campus
Two new spaces for students to interact and support each other opened on campus. The Bridge Cafe and the Hub for Organizing, Multiculturalism and Equity (HOME) provide spaces for support and positive interactions among multicultural communities and allies.
102 Participants in Mentoring Matters
51 staff mentors matched with an equal number of mentees across 11 campus units for professional enrichment and to improve workplace culture.
2 New Faculty/Staff Affinity Groups
Human Resources launched two new affinity groups to help faculty and staff build relationships with colleagues across campus. The Latino and Hispanic Faculty & Staff Affinity Group and the LGBTQ+ Faculty & Staff Affinity Group join the Black Faculty & Staff Affinity Group to make a total of three.
Several special graduation celebrations recognized underrepresented communities as they prepared to join the AU alumni ranks. The Third Annual Black Graduation, the Second Annual Latinx Graduation and the Inaugural Student-Veteran Graduation were a celebration of the hard-work and dedication of students from these communities.
Objective: AU's systems, policies, and procedures will facilitate diversity, inclusion, transparency, and accountability. We will evaluate, revise, and communicate changes in policies and protocols that will facilitate reports of bias and discrimination, improve clarity, provide transparency, promote fairness, and enhance accountability.
Objective: We will transform the way we recruit, hire, train, develop, evaluate, and recognize AU faculty, staff, and administrators to encourage the achievement of our diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.
Reducing Food insecurity
In response to student-conducted surveys indicating food insecurities on campus, the Market, a student-operated food pantry, opened in spring 2018 on the lower level of Letts Hall.
Partnering for Success
In April 2018, President Burwell signed on to Excelencia's Presidents for Latino Student Success Initiative. Presidents enrolled in the Excelencia in Action (E-Action) network collaborate with Excelencia in Education to leverage collective expertise and resources, foster partnerships, and amplify current efforts at the national level.
Opening Doors for Future Teachers
The new partnership between AU's School of Education and DC Public Schools is aimed at establishing a diverse pipeline of teachers for the city's schools.
Objective: We will offer an inclusive core curriculum that advances a holistic learning experience and demonstrates AU's values of critical inquiry, intellectual engagement, and respectful discourse across diverse perspectives.
1,800 First-Year Students
The mandatory American University Experience II (AUx2) course encourages dialogue across difference through a multidisciplinary curriculum. The new course will roll out to about 1,800 first-year students in spring 2019. The course will be guided by the new AUx2 Council, comprised of full-time faculty and staff from across campus. Members of the council provide program oversight, engage in curricular review and recommendations, and participate in ongoing AUx2 instructor training and mentorship.
New Language Course
CAS’s Department of World Languages and Cultures is offering a new course for Spanish-heritage speakers.