Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Dr. Faulkner: Diversity at Vol State

This past week several of us participated in an on-campus Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Leadership Program.  What emerged during the two days were some incredibly frank conversations about the state of diversity and inclusion in our campus community.  Part of the process was to conduct a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) assessment.  I was incredibly proud that our list of strengths was long and rich.  Among our strengths are:

-We are a caring and friendly campus community.

-The diversity committee is a standing committee of the college.

-Our Office of Student Life and Diversity and the many initiatives they have established.

-We have three certified diversity training professionals on our campus. (Kenny Yarbrough, Andrea Boddie, Delois Reagan)

-We have a rich diversity of different viewpoints on our campus.

-We have many cultural celebrations as part of campus engagement.

Another of our strengths is that we are willing to acknowledge our weakness and envision the opportunities for the future. We have much work to do.  The short action list includes:

-Solidifying our definition of diversity and inclusion.

-Creating a diversity and inclusion statement for the college.

-Moving beyond the idea that diversity is just about race and gender.

-Zeroing in on two or three things from our five year diversity plan and making those few things happen this year.

We will begin to tackle these tasks immediately.  Expect that even during the summer you will hear about diversity and inclusion activities on the campus and that you will be invited to be part of the process of moving us forward.

Remember - - -

Student Success is Job One

Success at VSCC is contingent upon all members of our campus community.

-Dr. Jerry Faulkner

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