We pledge continuing efforts to build and strengthen a community enriched by our differences and founded upon our common humanity.
Statement of Community
We pledge continuing efforts to build and strengthen a community enriched by our differences and founded upon our common humanity. Centre respects the right of all members of the community to express their individuality in a manner that is consistent with the dignity and welfare of others. Centre strives to create an environment where differences are celebrated rather than discouraged, where individuals have the opportunity to exchange ideas and share in the richness of mutual experience. By valuing the individual’s total character over any single characteristic, Centre will maintain its unique community.
Statement of Diversity
As the body entrusted with the overall governance and stewardship of Centre College, the Board of Trustees pledges continuing efforts to build and strengthen a community enriched by the differences of its members and founded upon our common humanity. We also affirm that the values of diversity and inclusion are critical to the fulfillment of the mission of higher education in general, and Centre College in particular. To that end, we welcome into the Centre community individuals of different backgrounds, viewpoints, races, faith traditions, nationalities, sexual orientations, and experiences. These differences enrich our search for truth, our understanding of our fellow human beings, and make each of us more effective leaders and actors in this world. Because Centre honors the American ideals of access and social mobility through education, we are committed to not only welcoming into the Centre community persons who have traditionally been underrepresented, but also fostering their full participation in the community. Further, we are dedicated to creating a college community known for its honesty, strength, compassion, and commitment to the greater good.
We Trustees hold this to be true for all parts of the Centre community: The Board of Trustees, the faculty, the staff, and the student body. Pertaining to the Board of Trustees itself, we affirm that diversity and inclusion are critical to the Board’s effectiveness in leading the College. Thus, as the Board exercises its responsibility to select the best and the brightest individuals to serve as trustees, we recognize that diversity in its membership is an essential priority. In addition, the Board will endeavor to set policies, identify resources, and encourage sound practices designed to achieve diversity among the faculty, staff, and the student body.
As an institution we value and embrace students, faculty, and staff from all ethnic, racial, religious, and political backgrounds, gender identities, and sexual orientations. In order to successfully support those within our campus community, a set of goals guide our actions and lead us towards a more inclusive, empathetic, and knowledgeable community.
Provide Opportunity for All
Recruit and retain an inclusive community of students, faculty, staff, and administrators that represent and support a broad spectrum of interests, identities, abilities, cultures, religion, and worldviews.
Facilitate open and constructive conversation that creates opportunities to highlight others’ strengths and provide insight for the improvement of our community. Create an environment where consistent communication fosters cohesion, efficiency. and understanding.
Promote diversity and inclusion awareness and appreciation through the implementation of campus wide educational programs, events, and training for staff, faculty, and students.
Build an Integrated Community
Encourage collaboration and interdisciplinary learning across campus student organizations, academic programs, and campus offices.
Instill Cross-Cultural Skills
Cultivate an open learning environment founded on the skills of active listening, teamwork, and adaptability while reinforcing values of empathy and mutual respect.
As a community, recognize and respond to words and actions of discrimination and marginalization, emphasizing our intolerance for prejudice of any form.
Foster Freedom to Express Identity
Actively value and create contexts that support the vast spectrum of differences and identities within our campus community.
Fuel Communal Well-Being
Offer basic needs necessary for success as well as opportunities for personal and professional growth and creative exploration to build a safe, healthy, and growing community capable of realizing their potential.
DIVERSITY OFFICE PURPOSE
The Diversity Office works to increase the diversity of the faculty, staff, and students so that the Centre community will more fully reflect the racial and ethnic diversity of a global society.
Primary role of the Diversity Office
- Recruitment and retention of faculty, staff, and students
- Promoting campus diversity by working with the Diversity Student Union, Admission Office, Student Life Office, and Human Resources
- Coordinating activities for the Annual Martin Luther King Celebration
- Community relations programming
Diversity Office Initiatives
- Mellon Diversity Grant
- Revision of Faculty and Staff Hiring Processes
Diversity Climate Assessment
- Staff, Faculty, and Student Diversity and Inclusion Training
- Faculty, Student, and Staff Intergroup Dialogue Facilitation Training
- Faculty and Staff Learning Communities
THE WORK PLAN
In Fall 2018, President Roush released the Centre College Work Plan for Diversity and Inclusion. This work plan built upon not only the issues raised in the Diversity and Inclusion Climate Studies conducted in 2017, but also the concerns and needs underscored by the May 2018 Sit-In.
During the past school year, the College worked diligently to address the varied pledges of the Work Plan that sought to improve in the areas of education and training, transparency and reporting, and other support systems for a more diverse and inclusive campus. To that end, the Office of Diversity Affairs added two new positions, a Director of Diversity and Inclusion Programming and an Assistant Director. In addition, the Intercultural Suite was opened in the Campus Center with the mission to develop programming and support systems for students. The Convocation Committee put in place a system to increase significantly the number of convocations that have a diversity and inclusion focus. The Diversity Office offered a substantial menu of training sessions for faculty, staff, and students on skills to foster a more inclusive campus environment. Among the training sessions were those on implicit bias and negotiating difficult conversations. Human Resources and Academic Affairs have engaged in additional training in order to better recruit and hire a diverse faculty and staff. To foster a safer community, mechanisms to report and respond to title IX and bias incidents have been strengthened, including the introduction of the online Bias Incident Reporting System. The first Building Bridges and Community Day took place on November 1, 2018, as a way to offer additional skills and to provide a space for all members of the community to learn from and appreciate the rich diversity of our campus. The second annual event will take place November 5, 2019.