Inclusive Excellence is the umbrella framework under which the UW System and its institutions will move forward in coming years to address strategically equity, diversity and inclusion beyond Plan 2008. The central premise of Inclusive Excellence holds that UW System colleges and universities intentionally need to integrate their diversity efforts into the core aspects of their institutions—including academic priorities, leadership, quality improvement initiatives, decision-making, day-to-day operations, and organizational cultures—in order to maximize their success.
Office of the Provost and Vice Chancellor’s Inclusive Excellence Council
The Office of the Provost and Vice Chancellor’s Inclusive Excellence (IE) Council was formed to integrate the ideals of diversity, inclusion and equity into all levels of the University concerned with academic affairs. The results of the Campus Climate Survey and the Equity Scorecard will serve as guides for the committee in establishing action plans to promote these ideals. In keeping with UW System’s working definition of diversity, the IE Council defines diversity broadly as both “individual differences” and “group/social differences” such as “race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, country of origin, and ability as well as cultural, political, religious or other affiliations.” One of the goals of the IE Council will be to promote the exploration of the impact of differences on the learning process. These differences include the group/social differences named above; the status of students such as their socio-economic, marital, educational, employment, and/or family status; and their position as returning veterans, first-generation students, non-traditional students, transfer students, ESL students, and/or international students. The IE Council brings together administrators, classified staff, academic staff, faculty and students who have demonstrated leadership in and promotion of an improved campus climate around diversity. As it is defined in this charge, demonstrated leadership references an established record of being a change agent on issues of diversity on campus. The charge of the IE Council is to provide leadership, education and advocacy that will cultivate an equitable, inclusive, diverse, and supportive climate for people traditionally marginalized from and within the campus community.
More specifically, the IE Council will meet the following needs:
- Promote the hiring of faculty and staff who reflect the diversity within the student population;
- Investigate how to retain effectively diverse faculty and staff;
- Promote curriculum infusion of diversity and the development of inclusive pedagogical strategies in the Colleges;
- Increase the support available for diverse students to achieve success on campus;
- Educate the campus community about the importance of making the integration of inclusion and diversity central to all levels of the University concerned with academic affairs;
- Create multiple channels and forums through which diverse individuals and groups can communicate both their positive and negative experiences of the campus climate;
- Engage the campus in on-going discussions about strategies for achieving the goals of Inclusive Excellence;
- Facilitate the investigation of how and why those diverse students who are successful on campus (for example, International students) achieve such success;
- Investigate why diverse students who are not being retained leave the University;
- Investigate the challenges and obstacles to success for those diverse students who are not successful on campus;
- Create and empower collaborative groups of faculty, staff, and students that will work in innovative ways on inspiring change around and promoting dialogues on diversity;
- Advocate to ensure an environment of safety, equity, and respect for people of diverse races, ethnicities, religions, abilities, ages, classes, sexualities, sexes and genders;
- Establish modes of assessing the effectiveness of efforts to integrate inclusion and diversity into all levels of the University concerned with academic affairs;
- Work with departments across campus to develop materials and communication strategies that accurately depict existing diversity on campus while underscoring the commitment to increase diversity both on campus and in the extended community;
- Facilitate efforts to ensure that the campus community actively seeks speakers, board members and volunteers from diverse backgrounds;
- Collaborate with other offices and committees across campus committed to these outcomes including the Center for Academic Support and Diversity, the Race and Ethnicity Council, the LGBTQ Education and Advocacy Council, the Gender Equity Council, the LGBTQ Resource Center, the COLS Diversity Committee, the Office of Equity and Affirmative Action, Disability Services, Undergraduate Advising Resource Center, the Registrar’s Office and the Division of Student Affairs Inclusive Excellence Committee.
The organization, focus and work of the IE Council will center on achieving outcomes aligned with the above goals. The fundamental purpose of the Council will be to establish and carry out action plans that produce outcomes that improve campus climate and promote inclusion, equity and diversity at all levels of the University concerned with academic affairs.
The members of the IE Council will include representatives of faculty, academic staff, classified staff and students. Members will be appointed by the Provost on the basis of their commitment to accomplishing the goals of the charge as evidenced by their proven record of creating change around diversity on campus. To continue on the committee, members must contribute in significant ways to the achievement of the IE Council’s Action Plans.
Membership is comprised of 14 people serving two-year terms. In order to ensure on-going membership on the Council, in the first year of the Council, staggered terms will be created by appointing half of the members to two-year terms and the other half to three-year terms. After the first-year, however, all appointments will be for two-year terms. The Provost will appoint the chair of the Council. The Director of Equity and Affirmative Action will be a standing member. The Council will be comprised of at least four faculty members, five academic staff and/or classified staff members, two administrators, and two students. The final member of the committee is to be appointed at the discretion of the Provost and can hold any position at the University. Ideally, the committee will have members representing the following groups: (a) Center for Academic Support and Diversity, (b) African American Studies Program, (c) Race and Ethnicity Council, (c) LGBTQ Council and/or the LGBTQ Resource Center, (d) Multicultural Student Organizations, and (e) the Gender Equity Council, the Women’s Center and/or the Women’s Studies Program.
The Inclusive Excellence Council meets on a monthly basis unless additional meetings during a month are determined necessary by members of the committee. Actions shall be adopted upon an affirmative vote by a majority of members present. This structure may be amended by recommendations of a majority of members present.