Friday, March 1, 2013

Fostering a diverse and inclusive campus

“Young people, prepare yourselves as best you can for a world that grows more challenging every day — get the best education you can, and couple that education with real-life experience in social justice work.”

Julian Bond, civil rights activist and former chairman of the NAACP, shared thoughts like these as the keynote speaker of Bloomsburg University’s 20th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Banquet.

Building on Bond's important message, BU aims to create an inclusive climate for a diverse group of students, staff, faculty and administrators. One of the steps we've taken to make our university an even more welcoming and supportive community was to conduct a diversity climate survey. The survey will help us better understand campus community members' experiences with and perceptions of diversity and inclusion at BU.

Diversity Climate Survey

An university-wide Climate Survey, conducted in fall 2012 by the Office of Planning and Assessment, received 2,113 responses. “Climate” is the atmosphere of an organization as perceived by its members. An organization’s climate is reflected in:

  • its structures, policies and practices
  • the demographics of its members
  • the attitudes and values of its members and leaders;
  • and the quality of personal interactions. 

It includes perceptions of inclusiveness, friendliness, cooperation, professionalism, recognition, support and opportunities for advancement.

The survey included items about overall satisfaction at the university, evaluation of the work environment and leadership, access to and satisfaction with academic resources, and support and career development issues such as promotion, tenure, mentoring and retention.

Findings from this survey build on earlier efforts to provide a benchmark for Bloomsburg University and gauge current perceptions. Results and final recommendations will be used to prioritize and implement changes to foster a diverse and inclusive campus community.

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