Events in the fall of 2015 at Ithaca College and at campuses elsewhere in the country have highlighted the extent to which these institutions can be forbidding and hostile environments to many students. At its November 10, 2015 meeting, the Faculty Council decided that it is important for the faculty to take the lead in improving the climate of inclusivity on campus. One of its initiatives is to support departments in holding events designed to increase inclusivity on campus, in classrooms, and among faculty. These events might include, but are not limited to, workshops, teach-ins, or seminars.
Members of the Faculty Council realize that different departments are in somewhat different circumstances and have different needs and areas of expertise. They also know that there is a wide range of views among faculty about how to improve inclusivity. So rather than dictating any particular form for events to take, the Council established a diversity task force to compile a list of resources for departments to use at their own discretion. These resources are available on the following Sakai site, organized by topic (on the left menu) and as a list in the Resources section of the site.
The resources include links to books, articles, multimedia and webinars on issues such as handling the discussion of controversial issues, avoiding micro-aggressions, dealing with gender, sexual orientation, disability, social class and promoting inclusivity in the classroom. The list also includes ideas for faculty training and links to bibliographies and other sources of help and information. The Faculty Council hopes that these resources will be useful in departments' efforts to make a more inclusive environment at Ithaca College.
The Diversity Task Force has also created a forum on the Sakai site into which we invite comments from individuals and departments who have used the resources. Please share how you have used the site so that others can learn from your success and frustrations.
The Faculty Council Task Force on Diversity can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have any problems with the site, or you have suggestions for additional resources, please use this email to contact us.
We are very grateful to the many members of the campus community that contributed valuable time, resources and ideas to this project, including: Michelle Rios-Dominguez (Human Resources), Jeane Copenhaver-Johnson (Education), Carla Golden (Psychology/Women’s and Gender Studies), Belisa Gonzalez (Sociology/Center for the Study of Culture, Race and Ethnicity), Deborah Harper (Center for Counseling, Health and Wellness), Jennifer Jolly (Art History/Latin American Studies), Luca Maurer (Center for Counseling, Health and Wellness), Leslie Reid (Student Accessibility Services), Doc Richardson (Associate Provost for Diversity, Inclusion and Engagement), Patricia Rodriguez (Politics) and, finally, Peter Rothbart (Faculty Council Chair) for his work in gathering the initial set of materials for this site.