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Diversity Message

A Message on Diversity from Dr. Uric Dufrene, Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs

Academic Affairs is committed to IU Southeast’s strategic goal of enhanced diversity as an essential element of our educational purpose to prepare students to act as thoughtful, informed, and productive citizens and lifelong learners in the context of a complex and rapidly changing society. Our students and graduates must be able to communicate and to work effectively with persons of diverse ages, ethnicities, abilities, religions, gender, sexual orientations, and socio-economic status to succeed in the classroom, in the workplace, and in their lives as citizens. Also, modern technology has ensured that each person is affected by events around the world, making our interdependence across geographic boundaries a reality. Therefore, we must provide our graduates with a foundation for understanding other societies and appreciating both their similarities and differences.

Our General Education program incorporates diversity through a requirement that all degree-seeking undergraduates must fulfill. For the major, our degree-granting programs require additional exposure to diverse courses. To guide our work, we integrate assessment of our diversity efforts through General Education, through the assessment of the major, and through the assessment of the university as a whole. For example, we recently surveyed faculty, staff and students about our campus climate to learn what we can do better. By April of 2012, we will present the findings to the campus community and will begin to use them to continuously improve.

Our search committees are instructed in methods to solicit applications from a broad spectrum of applicants to ensure equal opportunity of employment. Through these cumulative efforts, we have seen our population become increasingly diverse.

We continuously strive to better communicate and to make more visible our commitment, our efforts, and our achievements. We have recently redesigned our diversity web pages to highlight them. Our Diversity Academy has created an e-publication to showcase the teaching, research, and service of faculty for diverse causes. Our schools, having completed new strategic plans in 2010, are in the process of implementing initiatives that include those that fulfill diversity objectives.

We are committed to building and strengthening partnerships throughout the campus. Toward that end, Chancellor Wallace and the Vice Chancellors who comprise the Diversity Committee have uniquely structured the administration of diversity. Three Diversity Coordinators represent interests of faculty, staff, and students in working to nurture a welcoming campus climate. A campus-wide diversity committee also serves as the Chancellor’s Advisory Council on Diversity, bringing broad-based perspectives to the Diversity Coordinators and to the Diversity Committee.

We invite you to join us to make IU Southeast an excellent place for persons of all backgrounds to study, to work, and to visit.