Reaffirming FAU’s Commitment to Diversity and InclusionTuesday, Nov 03, 2020
You may be aware of a recent social media video that features racist and offensive content. I’d like to reiterate how vital it is for us to come together in the face of hate and racism, and to reaffirm our commitment to the long history of diversity and inclusion that sits at the heart of this great institution.
This past summer, I shared a message with you that condemned all acts of racism, hatred and violence. Those feelings are just as strong today, and the use of the language displayed in the social media video is fundamentally contrary to our views and values. Additionally, I shared updates in this message and in this video that underscored how important we hold these values, as well as the steps we are taking to develop pathways to meaningful, positive and lasting change.
Today, I’d like to share some further updates:
- The University Diversity Council was expanded to include representatives from FAU Athletics and the University Police Department.
- The Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management established a student, faculty and staff advisory council to discuss the expansion of the Center for Inclusion, Diversity Education, and Advocacy (IDEAs), and the establishment of an office dedicated to Black/African-American student success and advocacy. The office is expected to open during the spring 2021 semester.
- The Everfi “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion” course was made available to all students.
- Incoming faculty are provided an opportunity to participate in anti-racism and inclusive language training.
- The Faculty Senate and Division of Academic Affairs created an Ad Hoc Joint University Committee on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
- The Schmidt College of Medicine launched a search for a Chief Equity, Inclusion and Diversity Officer.
- FAU Athletics established a Diversity and Inclusion Initiative Committee.
In addition, all units have continued constructive dialogue related to diversity, inclusion, and equity, while providing resources for personal and professional growth. Examples include a Mental Health Summit, which incorporated breakout sessions on supporting marginalized populations, and a program by the Urban Male Institute on being an agent for positive change. Future opportunities include the Diversity Symposium for Faculty and Staff, “WeLead” Diversity Symposium for students, Social Justice Week, and the MLK Diversity Address and Day of Service, all scheduled for January 2021.
FAU will continue to foster a safe and inclusive environment for all students, faculty and staff, regardless of race, ethnicity, religious beliefs, gender or sexual orientation. I invite you to visit the Diversity and Inclusion section of FAU.edu to learn more about the university’s ongoing efforts toward greater diversity, inclusion and equity.