The following message from Provost Pat Farrell was recently shared with the campus community.
Dear Members of the Campus Community:
I’m writing to keep you updated on progress on some diversity and inclusion efforts across the university. There have been a number of developments that constitute significant progress, including the following:
To help first-generation students succeed at Lehigh, we are developing a summer institute. Several faculty have committed to working with these students over the course of the three-week program that will run from June 29th through July 18th. I’d like to thank Tyrone Russell, director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs, who has been leading this effort.
A proposal for programmatic and physical enhancements to UMOJA House to create academic space has been submitted to my office. The group that worked on it involves representatives from across the university and is being led by Angela Scott, Director for Academic Diversity and Outreach. We expect to be able to announce next steps and a proposed timeline shortly.
The Office of General Counsel has posted and advertised the new position of Equal Opportunity Compliance Coordinator. The individual hired for this role will be responsible for overseeing and coordinating the education, investigation and compliance efforts associated with equal opportunity and non-discrimination laws and related university policies. We feel that this is an important development as it will aid us in centralizing our reporting structures for discrimination and harassment complaints and will promote greater coordination among all of those who work with these issues.
The Office of the General Counsel recently held educational sessions attended by 44 staff and faculty on the University’s Policy on Harassment, including the procedures for reporting and responding to incidents of harassment. In the remaining weeks of the academic year, the General Counsel’s Office and volunteers from this group will be educating student groups, faculty and staff about the University’s Policy on Harassment.
I’m also gratified to see the level of engagement in the Student Senate, which formed an Excellence in Inclusiveness group to work closely with senior faculty across the colleges. This effort is being coordinated through the Office of Academic Diversity, and is facilitating candid and helpful discussions between faculty and students in an effort to create academic spaces for student cultural awareness.
These efforts will continue to be critical for moving Lehigh forward and we pledge to sustain this momentum through the remainder of this academic year, and into the next.
Patrick V. Farrell
Posted on Friday, April 11, 2014