Bias Education and Resource Team (BERT)

What is BERT?

The University of San Francisco's Bias Education and Resource Team (BERT) is a University-wide team that provides support and resources to students, faculty, and staff who have witnessed, or themselves become a target of, an act of bias. BERT is a collaborative effort between the Offices of Student Life, Dean of Students, Diversity Engagement and Community Outreach (DECO) and Human Resources.

BERT is intended to educate the USF community and support those who experience bias and harassment. Actions taken by BERT in pursuit of these goals will be grounded in the University's mission and values as a Jesuit Catholic institution committed to equity and social justice. BERT strives to foster respectful and humanizing free expression of ideas, beliefs, and opinions.

What does the Bias Education and Resource Team do? 

The fundamental role of BERT is to:

  • Provide affected individuals and communities a space to have their voices heard
  • Provide opportunities for education to mitigate or prevent similar occurrences in the future
  • Ensure a comprehensive and timely response to bias incidents involving students, faculty and staff 
  • Facilitate trainings and workshops for students, faculty and staff related to the BERT reporting process, microaggressions, bystander intervention, and cultural competency 
  • Create and align educational campaigns to campus climate and equity issues 

To meet our mission, BERT is comprised of 3 teams:

EDUCATION TEAM: The role of this team is to serve as clearing house of resources and programming around events and media (print & online) for the university. The goal of the team is to assist with communications and publications around incidents of bias in the community and to serve as a resource to the BERT response team, administrators, and campus community.

RESPONSE TEAM: The response team is made up of the Dean of Students and a designee (and process advocates and Human Resources when applicable). These members oversee and coordinate the assignment and process of incoming BERT reports involving students, faculty and staff.  

PROCESS ADVOCATES: Process Advocates provide support and resources for impacted parties. These individuals are available to meet with impacted parties (students, faculty, and staff) to serve as an advocate throughout the process.