Overview

Collectively, with forceful and concerted actions, we can bring about change in our own communities — and within our own institution — by advancing equity, inclusiveness and anti-racism as cornerstones of who we are at Quinnipiac. 

To that end, we have developed Quinnipiac’s Actions to Advance Racial Justice. The actions outlined below are informed by statements, pledges and ideas we heard from both faculty and student groups.

Learn more about the plan:

Partner with us

If you have any questions or would like to partner with us, contact:

Don C. Sawyer III, PhD, Vice President for Equity and Inclusion/Associate Professor of Sociology:
donald.sawyer@qu.edu

Khalilah Brown-Dean, Senior Director for Inclusive Excellence/Associate Professor of Political Science:
khalilah.brown-dean@qu.edu

 

 

Curriculum Review

Curriculum Review

Goal: Increase learning about the roots and contemporary manifestations of social injustice, privilege, oppression, and the drivers of social change.
Status: In Progress 

Progress and Efforts

A preliminary review of curricular and co-curricular offerings is being piloted in the School of Health Sciences. In addition, ongoing discussions are taking place within the committees overseeing the University Curriculum, including First-Year Seminar and I-courses. We will expand this work in partnership with the provost and various university partners to develop and pilot a 360 review. 

We will launch the Inclusive Excellence Teaching Lab to support faculty innovations in course creation, redesign and mentoring to ensure every course reflects this commitment. The lab will bring together faculty from each school to develop a template for curriculum review that is both standardized and specific to curricular needs of the various programs. The lab will be staffed by the inaugural cohort of Inclusive Excellence Teaching Fellows and co-led by two faculty members in collaboration with the Center for Teaching and Learning and the Center for Research and Scholarship. 

This spring, the teaching lab will offer 5 Inclusive Excellence Transformation Grants to faculty and staff who would like to develop courses and/or co-curricular opportunities during Summer 2021. Preference will be given to collaborative efforts. Eventually this lab may serve as a revenue-generating resource for local educators and school districts to contract with the lab and its cohorts.

Bias Reporting

Bias Reporting

Goal: Educate the community about the reporting process to ensure a fair and efficient investigatory process that supports a welcoming community for all.
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

The Bias Reporting System has been revamped and now includes a structured flowchart to delineate what happens, who is involved, and how those who report can access additional resources and supports. This info will be integrated into the new DCGE and HR websites to ensure accessibility and efficiency. The Bias Incidence Response Team (BIRT) is being repurposed to enhance effectiveness. An announcement for the updated bias and discrimination policy and reporting form will be sent to the campus community.

Student Training

Student Training

Goal: Explore the roots of racism and actions to counter discrimination in society and in our own behaviors.
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

Virtual training experiences for students were developed and implemented during the Summer 2020 semester and continued into the Fall 2020 semester.  In addition, there will be more regularly offered standardized training sessions with virtual and limited in-person opportunities planned for Spring 2021 and beyond. A new virtual diversity training curriculum for all students will be introduced in Spring 2021. DCGE staff continue to work with and support student organizations and leaders committed to this work. 

Faculty and Staff Training

Faculty and Staff Training

Goal: Explore the roots of racism and actions to counter discrimination in society and in our own behaviors.
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

New mandatory training modules were developed and implemented to move beyond anti-bias and toward behaviors that create and sustain a welcoming community. A pilot of “Developing Inclusive Classrooms” trainings took place during the summer and at the start of Fall 2020. HR and DCGE staff are working to ensure equitable training and access across schools and campuses and to align those trainings with structural changes that enhance the implementation of what’s been learned. New requirements have been instituted for search committees to ensure a diverse candidate pool. 

Data Access

Data Access

Goal: Enhance access to data to promote greater transparency, strategic planning and accountability. 
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

Data is important, but context is essential. Relevant data housed by HR, Academic Innovation and Effectiveness and other units are being culled to develop a sharing format that is relevant and accessible. This includes data for QU and peer institutions to assist in developing metrics and plans of action. The goal is to build out a site and database to help develop benchmarks, track progress and inform all aspects of recruitment, retention and climate. 

Affinity Groups

Affinity Groups

Goal: Amplify the voices of diverse groups on campus and in our alumni community. 
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

We will develop a more comprehensive picture of existing groups and the need to supplement with new affinity groups based on shared identities and interests. Affinity groups will be leveraged to enhance opportunities for professional development, networking and community building. We will engage existing student affinity groups to address areas of concerns. 

We will launch The Inclusive Excellence Network as a collection of affinity groups driven by a fundamental question: How can we use our role as faculty, staff, students and mentors to work toward racial justice, social change, civic action and pedagogical engagement?

Pipeline

Pipeline

Goal: Improve policies and practices to enhance the pipeline and retention of underrepresented faculty, staff and students. 
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

We are working with DCGE, HR, Admissions and various departments, schools and programs across the university to address hiring and search practices, opportunities for internal advancement, and strategies for retention. The inaugural Quinnipiac University First-Year Immersion (QU-FYI) program for underrepresented students was launched this summer to help ease the transition from high school to Quinnipiac, and new mentoring strategies have been adopted to target underrepresented groups. 

We will launch The Path to Full mentoring initiative to enhance opportunities for faculty retention and promotion among underrepresented groups. Faculty diversity data will be assembled from each school. A similar plan for enhancing staff representation at various levels is also being developed. Partnerships are being initiated with the broader regional community to provide pathways from community colleges, job readiness programs and vocational training organizations. 

Indigenous Recognition

Indigenous Recognition

Goal: Appropriately acknowledge the Indigenous people of the land of this region who are Quinnipiac’s namesake.
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

We are developing a land acknowledgment statement in partnership with the Akomawt Educational Initiative and working with various student leaders and organizations to rethink the Legend of the Bobcat. Collaborative drafts of these documents should be completed by Spring 2021. A number of virtual programs connected to the Indigeneity initiative will be held during Fall 2020 and Spring 2021.

DCGE Support

DCGE Support

Goal: Attract philanthropy and augment the resources of the Department of Cultural and Global Engagement. 
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

Funding for DCGE has increased for academic year 2020–21. However, additional resources are being sought to expand structural enhancements, programming and staffing to implement the previous commitments of importance. DCGE will partner with the Development Office, the Center for Research and Scholarship, and various faculty leaders to pursue new funding streams. 

Civic Engagement

Civic Engagement

Goal: Promote greater global awareness and engagement that holds leaders accountable.
Status: In progress

Progress and Efforts

A new, nonpartisan QU VOTES! initiative was launched this semester to bring together students, staff, faculty and community members to promote: 1) greater awareness 2) increased exposure, and 3) engagement. This includes participation in National Voter Registration Day, debate watch parties, a film viewing and panel discussion, student-created PSAs on the importance of voting, and an information guide on how/where to register and vote. This is an initial step in ongoing efforts to promote civic engagement during and beyond elections.

Key Initiatives

Key Initiatives

 

The Action Plan Progress Report will be posted and updated on a quarterly basis so the university community can access, review and engage.

QU VOTES! brings together students, staff, faculty and community members to promote: 1) greater awareness 2) increased exposure, and 3) engagement. This includes participation in National Voter Registration Day, debate watch parties, a film viewing and panel discussion, student-created PSAs on the importance of voting, and an information guide on how/where to register and vote. 

The Inclusive Excellence Network (IEN) is a collection of affinity groups driven by a fundamental question: How can we use our roles as faculty, staff, students and mentors to work toward racial justice, social change, civic action and pedagogical engagement? In addition to specific projects, we will orient discussion toward further defining the unique and critical role university-based research can have in meeting the challenges we collectively face. 

The Inclusive Excellence Teaching Lab (IETL) is a partnership with the Center for Teaching and Learning, the Center for Research and Scholarship, and faculty from across the university who have demonstrated their commitment to, and interest in, issues of equity, diversity and inclusion within their curricular and co-curricular approaches. These scholars become exemplars for their colleagues by encouraging them to consider how these themes shape the experiences and intellectual explorations of students, staff and faculty within their programs. In Spring 2021, the teaching lab will offer 5 “Inclusive Excellence Transformation Grants” to faculty who would like to develop courses and/or co-curricular opportunities during Summer 2021. Preference will be given to collaborative efforts. Eventually this lab will also serve as a revenue generating resource for local educators and school districts to contract with the lab and its cohorts. 

The Path to Full Initiative (PFI). While Quinnipiac has made some incremental gains in diversifying its faculty at the junior ranks and awarding tenure, there is a stalling at the rank of associate that reflects broader trends in academic ranks across higher education. For example, data from the Pew Research Center shows that only 19% of full professors nationwide are non-White compared to 27% of assistant professors. This is a dedicated mentoring program for underrepresented faculty with less than 5 years of service at the university to match junior faculty with two mentors: 1 from within their college and 1 from outside the college with similar scholarly interests. This approach to layered mentoring (in addition to mentoring that should happen within a professor’s home department) is a structured way to help support faculty development, identify opportunities for service and networking, and diminish the silos that seem to keep faculty separated by program rather than interests. Eventually, the goal is to move toward a program that allows each of the program mentees to select a faculty member from outside the university with whom they would like to build a professional relationship. That outside faculty member would be invited to be a visiting lecturer for a 2-3 day residency that would include an open talk for the university community and a small group workshop with affiliated faculty.