Steps Taken in Race, Bias and Equity Initiative
Colorado State University is committed to the transparency and accountability of the Race, Bias, and Equity Initiative and is pleased to enumerate some of the events, specific steps taken, and commitments made under the auspices of the Initiative since its announcement in September 2019.
- The Office of the Provost committed all academic units across campus to participate in the Colorado Department of Higher Education Equity Toolkit, a series of online modules designed to help faculty members better address racism, bias, equity, and related issues in their classrooms
- President McConnell gave a direct charge to the President’s Executive Leadership Team to develop three programs or initiatives in their units that would address systemic racism, bias and/or equity issues.
- President McConnell charged the ELT to conduct an internal audit of their units to identify areas of concern per race, bias or equity issues among faculty, staff and/or students.
- The Vice President for Diversity’s office hosted and facilitated discussions with faculty and staff around race, bias and equity issues. (Several dates in Fall 2019)
- President McConnell hosted a candid discussion with Jewish student and faculty leadership on campus.
- The Diversity Symposium and campus-wide event planners responded to this initiative to allow various campus groups to address race, bias and equity issues directly and generally, and in their constituencies specifically.
- Blanche Hughes, vice president for student affairs, was appointed by President Joyce McConnell to lead the Race, Bias, and Equity Initiative.
- A call for proposals was made for RBEI submissions.
- Theo Wilson, an NAACP speaker, poet, and activist who publicly criticized CSU for our response to recent incidents of racism on campus, was invited to campus. Mr. Wilson spoke publicly at the Lory Student Center.
- President McConnell hosted an open forum for students.
- Hughes appointed a Core team for the Race, Bias and Equity Initiative.
- First consideration was given to proposals submitted by December 31, 2019.
- RBEI proposal rubric developed by members of the Core Team and reviewed by the full Core Team. The rubric was designed to allow for both quantitative and qualitative evaluations of the merits of each proposal as measured against the stated RBEI goals.
- Nine RBEI working groups were established, with over 65 faculty and staff across campus, to review the proposals submitted by December 31st.
- Two student interns joined the RBEI efforts helping with student outreach and input.
- Half-day retreat held for working groups on February 11 to discuss the proposals.
- RBEI 12/31/19 proposals by numbers
- 116 proposals reviewed by the working groups
- 51 student proposals
- 65 faculty/staff proposals
- All 8 colleges represented
- Proposal themes emerged:
- Trainings and professional development
- Staffing, human resources, and office structure(s)
- Events, activities, art exhibits, and speakers
- Classroom (practices, resources, etc.)
- Educational campaigns
- Other (including supporting current initiatives)
- Student proposals were reviewed by one consistent working group and were not compared to proposals submitted by faculty and staff.
- President McConnell visits with the Core Team for a check-in.
- All those who submitted a proposal by the December 31st review date received an email communicating proposals were in the review process.
- Student feedback sessions conducted before spring break (additional sessions to be scheduled):
- Creating Respect, Educating Wellness, for & by, Students (CREWS)
- Multicultural Greek Council (MGC)
- National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC)
- President’s Multicultural Student Advisory Committee (PMSAC)
- Residence Hall Association (RHA)
- Residence Life
- Student Diversity Programs & Services student forum
- Core Team met before spring break to discuss proposals to move into action this semester and next steps in the RBEI process.
- CSU_RBEI Twitter account established for more robust communication efforts.
- Mary Ontiveros, vice president for diversity, was appointed by President Joyce McConnell to co-chair the Race, Bias, and Equity Initiative.
- RBEI announces the selected proposal themes and next steps for all submitted ideas in a university-wide message
- RBEI co-chairs meet with three proposal author teams that relate to the selected themes to begin discussing next steps
- Core Team has its final meeting and President Joyce McConnell attends to share gratitude for their work on the proposal process
- RBEI co-chairs continue meeting with a planning team to create the structure for the next phase of RBEI
- RBEI co-chairs meet with proposal author teams to continue planning next steps
- RBEI co-chairs present a new RBEI structure to President McConnell for input and final approval
- An RBEI budget for 2020-2021 is approved by President McConnell’s office to support the work of the selected proposal themes
- RBEI co-chairs meet with CSU’s new provost, Mary Pederson, to collaborate on goals and future directions of the initiative