Who We Are
The office was established in 2011 as a key priority for former Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Jennifer E. Turpin. Dr. Mary Wardell-Ghirarduzzi was appointed to lead the new area by developing an office dedicated to the institutional goals of diversity, inclusion, and equity.
One of the office’s greatest accomplishments has been to connect and articulate these institutional goals directly to the University mission of teaching, learning and service in the Jesuit Catholic tradition. This is an important and fundamental distinction on how we understand diversity, multiculturalism and pluralism in the 21st century as a learning institution. Diversity and inclusion is integral (and not an add-on) to our methods of teaching, learning, and engaging others in service. The more students, staff, and faculty who understand our Jesuit identity and the Ignatian principles that teach us how to become more aware and accepting of self and others, the more we will become the model of inclusive excellence and engagement as an American Jesuit Catholic university.
Other accomplishments of the Office of Diversity Engagement and Community Outreach include:
- the establishment of the Diversity Scholar and Visiting Professor program and the Stakeholder Community Forum;
- the expansion of the Gerardo Marín Diversity Fellowships (Dissertation Fellowship and Postdoctoral Fellowship);
- the creation of the Diversity Speaker Series, where local leaders come to campus to share their knowledge and experience.