Commitment to Diversity

College diversity statement

Consistent with the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences’ (CLAS) dedication to critical thinking and engaged citizenship, we hereby affirm our commitment as a public institution of higher learning to diversity, access, equity and inclusion in all aspects of our teaching, scholarship, and professional activities. Our lives, perspectives and practices are enriched when we actively engage in discourse and inclusive actions around complex ideas and issues, whether they pertain to race and ethnicity; sex; gender identity; political viewpoints; sexual orientation; special health needs; age; belief system; country of origin; or socio-economic status. Beyond words, we affirm our commitment to behaving in ways that respect people regardless of their differences and affirm our commitment to: no tolerance of behaviors that are exclusionary or disrespectful of these differences, educating people about how diversity influences us all, and educating diverse individuals in ways that are inclusive.

College Considers Diversity Its Foundation

Over a decade ago, in his February 2006 installation address, Chancellor Philip L. Dubois highlighted the importance of campus diversity to the future of the institution. He said, “The goal of creating an inclusive campus community [reflects] this campus’ long-held understanding that diversity isn’t just the right thing to do—it is an educational and business necessity.”

The College of Liberal Arts & Sciences understands this necessity and is uniquely situated to contribute to a diverse university community, as diversity is the foundation on which we are built. Our academic departments and degree programs, by their very nature, support and promote a rigorous examination and understanding of the multicultural world in which we live today. To that end, we have compiled an inventory of diversity courses, responding to a request by students to make courses with diverse perspectives more visible. Academic department chairs and program directors provided the college with the already existing courses that are in the catalog that they felt met this request.

In the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences we are committed to developing an inclusive environment where diversity, in all its forms, is valued and incorporated in the full-range of college activities. Please take a moment to explore this website and learn more about the myriad of ways that diversity informs our intellectual, pedagogical, and professional activities. 

Our faculty, staff and students play an essential role in creating a campus climate committed to diversity—and we together, as a college, a university and a region benefit from this commitment. In support of those efforts, we have identified regional and national diversity affinity groups by degree program.

Additionally, we offer many development opportunities that support a commitment to building a strong intellectual community of scholars from different backgrounds. In one such program, the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences offers 3 competitive Summer Pre-Doctoral Diversity Teaching Fellowships. The purpose of the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences' Pre-Doctoral Diversity Fellowship is to support the early development of scholars who show promise of distinguished academic careers and who are from historically underrepresented groups.

Throughout these pages of our website, you can learn more about the many initiatives we support to fulfill our commitment to an inclusive environment.

Nancy A. Gutierrez
Dean, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences