Diversity, Inclusion & Access

The History of the Diversity Effort at UMass

In 1996, then Chancellor David Scott asked the Chancellor’s Counsel on Community, Diversity and Social Justice (CDSJ) to generate a Diversity Action Plan which would help move the campus to a new level of attention and action regarding these issues. The Counsel sought and incorporated input from many campus groups and individuals. Based on extensive research and consultation, the Counsel published a report in 1998 entitled A New Approach to Promoting Community, Diversity and Social Justice. In 2003-2004, the University CDSJ Team compiled a report on the campus-wide results of a climate survey administered to faculty, staff and graduate student employees.

1998  A New Approach to Promoting Community, Diversity and Social Justice   http://www.umass.edu/ohr/cdsj/cdsj_report_1.html

In fall 2004, then Chancellor John V. Lombardi—saying that he was “seriously concerned about the effectiveness” of the campus’s approach to diversity issues—appointed a special Commission on Campus Diversity. In spring 2005, the 23 member Commission, chaired by the Dean of the Graduate School of Howard University, delivered a comprehensive report titled Diversity and Inclusion at UMass Amherst: a Blueprint for Change. Its recommendations were meant to enhance and sustain an inclusive environment at UMass Amherst. 10/2/98

2005  Diversity and Inclusion at UMass Amherst: a Blueprint for Change  http://www.umass.edu/campusdiversity/pdfs/final_report.pdf

These recommendations underwent a period of public review and comment; the Chancellor then released a follow-up document called On Improving Campus Diversity: An Action Plan. It proposed action in two major areas, Academic Affairs and Student Affairs. It reaffirmed that, “the first and most important principle is that the campus is responsible for its actions, its behavior, and its programs in the areas addressed by the Commission… The agenda for diversity and inclusion is a core issue within the mainstream of campus life.” 3/1/05

2005  On Improving Campus Diversity: An Action Plan  http://www.umass.edu/campusdiversity/pdfs/031205_draftaction.pdf

Two years later, in June 2007, the campus released a progress report entitled, Continuing a Focus in Diversity and Positive Climate: An Update of the Actions Indicated in the Campus “Action Plan.” This report details the actions taken in response to the spring 2005 Action Plan. Within Academic Affairs, major areas included: Improving Undergraduate Advising; Faculty Recruitment and Retention; Faculty Development; and Re-Thinking General Education. Within Student Affairs, major areas included: Reorganization; Undergraduate Recruitment; and Retention. 3/12/05

2007  Continuing a Focus in Diversity and Positive Climate: An Update of the Actions Indicated in the Campus “Action Plan.”  Not online

During the spring of 2010, new steps were taken to strengthen and revitalize diversity initiatives on campus. Chancellor Holub formed the Chancellor’s Diversity Advisory Committee to serve as an advisory board on matters of diversity. This Committee brings together offices, programs and individuals who do important work to advance the campus’s commitment to diversity and equity, and is comprised of faculty, staff, students and community members. As charged, the Committee developed a Diversity Mission Statement for the campusand contributed to the development of a comprehensive diversity and equity plan. The Diversity Plan describes UMass Amherst’s continuing efforts to promote diversity and outlines priorities that will help to guide our steps and focus our efforts as we move forward in this important arena. 9/12/11

2011  Diversity Plan  http://www.umass.edu/eod/DiversityPlan.pdf


External Evaluations & the UMass response


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