Office of Inclusive Excellence Launches New Diversity Action Plan

Office+of+Inclusive+Excellence+Launches+New+Diversity+Action+Plan

By: Mallory Ambrose

The Office of Inclusive Excellence launched their proposal for the 2021-2025 Diversity Action Plan last Thursday Oct. 1.

According to the office of inclusive excellence home webpage, the Diversity Action Plan (DAP) outlines GC’s work towards creating an inclusive environment on campus and throughout the Milledgeville community. Under the leadership of President Dorman, the GC DAP illustrates the importance of continuing diversity and inclusion efforts.

Modeling California State University’s Chico’s diversity plan, GC’s current DAP outlines four objective goals: student diversity access and success; curriculum, creative learning and scholarship; faculty and staff recruitment and retention success; and campus climate.

“Now that we have that framework, we hope in the next Diversity Action Plan to focus more on how we can increase the diversity of our community and how we can foster a more inclusive campus climate.” Said Carolyn Denard, chief diversity officer.

President Dorman met with the DAP committee on Sept. 30, giving them the charge to continue building on the great work that was done for the preceding 2014-2019 Diversity Action Plan. He also asked that they focus on ways in which GC can reach greater levels of intentionality, accountability, and consistency.

Additionally, he asked that the committee move to establish a strong partnership with the Milledgeville community, which will catalyze the growth of a more diverse and inclusive community environment. “We have a Steering Committee of 35 members who will be working together on six subcommittees—for faculty, students, staff, curriculum, climate, and community relations (with the City of Milledgeville) to complete the work,” Denard said. “The Steering Committee will also invite key members of the Milledgeville community to serve as ex-officio members to help us with its community outreach efforts.”

Denard will act as chair among the members who sit on the DAP board. With past experience leading the first 2014-2019 DAP, former Chief Diversity Officer, Dr. Veronica Womack, will serve as an ex-officio member providing insight and advice on the new work being done.

Through the collection of input from the GC community, Denard plans to have the Steering Committee develop and write the plan. The final culminated version of the DAP will then be presented to President Dorman and his cabinet for approval early Nov. 2021.

“The timeline for the New Plan will be approximately 14 months. Implementation of the New Diversity Action Plan will begin officially in January 2022,” Denard said.

“When I applied to GC as a senior in high school, I was excited to see a change of not only scenery, but people,” said Abby Davis, senior business management major. “I enjoy the diversity of personalities, talents, and styles across GC’s campus and hope for this to be a constant that sets GC apart from other universities. I think that the new DAP will ensure this.”

For more information on the DAP, inclusive excellence resources can be found on the GC Office of Inclusive Excellence homepage. Students who are interested in promoting diversity and inclusion on campus can join GC’s Diversity Peer Educators student organization. Contact GC’s DPE head coordinator, Nadirah Mayweather at [email protected] more information.