University President Proposes Several Initiatives Aimed at Producing a “More Inclusive Yale”

yaleAfter a series of demonstrations by students of color on campus, Yale University President Peter Salovey issued a statement that began, “In my 35 years on this campus, I have never been as simultaneously moved, challenged, and encouraged by our community — and all the promise it embodies — as in the past two weeks. You have given strong voice to the need for us to work toward a better, more diverse, and more inclusive Yale.”

President Salovey went on to announce a series of new initiatives aimed at bringing about a “more inclusive Yale.” Among the new initiatives are:

  • Yale will move ahead with plans to establish a prominent university center that focuses on research and scholarship on issues concerning race, ethnicity, and other aspects of social identity. President Salovey said that significant resources will be allocated for programming and staff.
  • The budgets of four cultural centers on the Yale campus – including the Afro-American Cultural Center – will be doubled.
  • Financial aid policies for low-income students will be enhanced.
  • Mental health counselors for students will be available for consultation at the university’s four cultural centers.
  • Senior leadership will undergo diversity training.
  • Additional funds will be allocated to diversity training during student orientation programs.
  • The university will refine efforts to make it easier for students, faculty, and staff to report actions that violate the university’s nondiscrimination policies.

Earlier this month, Yale University announced a five-year, $50 million program aimed at increasing the diversity of its faculty. (See JBHE post here.)

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  1. I appreciate President Salovey’s commitment to improving diversity but I hope there will be a significant investment in initiatives to improve equity as well. Equally important, I hope other elite private and public universities take stock of what they need to do to move the diversity and equity neddle on their respective campuses.

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