Survey Finds Widespread Student Support for Diversity Initiatives in Higher Education

A new survey by Best Colleges found that college students want to be involved in a college or university’s decision-making process on issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion. In a survey of a large group of undergraduate students, Best Colleges found that 39 percent of all students were asked to provide input before decisions were made concerning diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts by their school. Out of those given the opportunity, 76 percent did so, according to the survey.

Despite students’ desire to be involved in changes on campus, 43 percent report that they were not given the opportunity to provide input. Another 19 percent were unsure if there had been an opportunity to provide input prior to their institution announcing DEI commitments.

The survey found that students report that a lack of awareness and an inability to access proper institutional resources is halting them from participating in on-campus DEI efforts. Nearly half of surveyed students believe that their school should require all students, faculty, and staff to participate in DEI training. An additional 46 percent of respondents believe that their schools should require all students to participate in a semester-long course on the history and root causes of the unequal distribution of wealth, opportunities, and privileges in society.

Despite the many barriers preventing students from getting as involved in DEI efforts as they’d like to, more than half of students report that they can and will participate in their schools’ DEI initiatives. Just under half report that their peers are also committed to DEI efforts on campus, and 44 percent agree that their peers are just as committed to these efforts off-campus as they are on campus.

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  1. The funny part is that this survey’s results do not compare to reality in academia, as diversity is lacking in most universities and colleges, as you typically will only find (on large scale) the hiring of Black individuals in the C-suite role for diversity and inclusion positions

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