Diversity and Inclusion Excellence Plan

Inclusive Excellence Priority I: Building an Inclusive Living/Learning Environment that Supports Access and Success for Diverse Students

Unit Goal 1.1: Increase enrollment of underrepresented and underserved students at the undergraduate and graduate level in the Odum School of Ecology (OSE).

Proposed action: Enhance recruitment, outreach, and mentoring to increase the proportion of graduates from underrepresented and underserved groups.

Unit Goal 1.2: Enhance field safety for school staff and students to promote inclusivity by reducing and countering experiences of exclusion, discrimination, or violence based on gender or any other form of identity status.

Action: Develop and maintain an updated field safety manual and guidelines for fostering inclusivity and safety in field settings for OSE faculty, staff, and students.

Unit Goal 1.3: Provide DEI training to faculty, staff, and students, including mentorship training.

Action: Offer and promote annual DEI-enhancing workshops for OSE faculty, staff, and students.

Inclusive Excellence Priority II: Recruiting and Retaining a Diverse Workforce to Advance Our Mission in the 21st Century

Unit Goal 2.1: Diversify faculty mentor population.

Action: Reach a diverse target population when filling faculty positions through job listing services and direct outreach by search committee members.

Unit Goal 2.2: Diversify external mentorship opportunities.

Action: Attract scholars from diverse backgrounds to interact with our faculty and students (e.g., seminar speakers).

Unit Goal 2.3: Promote and incentivize faculty and staff time commitments for outreach to enhance DEI.

Action: Update annual self-evaluation to include dedicated space to report optional DEI-related work, and increase the number of DEI promoting activities reported by faculty and staff. Factor this work into assessments of service load and assignment to university and unit committees.

Inclusive Excellence Priority III: Expanding Partnerships and Outreach to Strengthen Diverse Communities

Unit Goal 3.1: Ensure and increase financial, material, and human resources dedicated to supporting inclusive outreach activities in OSE.

Action: Increase financial and material resources to support inclusive outreach.

Unit Goal 3.2: Promote and incentivize student time commitments for outreach to enhance DEI.

Action: Promote outreach through EcoReach or other programs as internships for class credit.

Unit Goal 3.3: Provide and promote resources to improve inclusivity in OSE communications and outreach activities.

Action: Develop inclusive communications handbook of best practices and guidance.