Kent State diversity plan to be launched

Carley Hull

Executive members of Kent State’s Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion will formally announce the division’s 5-year strategic diversity plan and new staff Monday Sept. 9 at the DEI Fall Reception.

“It is really two pieces that are important [at the DEI Fall Reception],” said Dana Lawless-Andric, executive director of Diversity and Inclusion. “It is the official launch of our Equity Action Plan and secondly, and just as important, is to introduce our new staff and some of the great changes in DEI this year.”

Keith Wisdom, executive director of AALANA Initiatives in the Student Multicultural Center, is one of the new members of DEI that will be introduced Monday. According to AALANA Initiatives online, the organization helps African-American, Latino American and Native American students and faculty succeed at Kent State, supplies AALANA recruitment efforts, and supports AALANA faculty and students.

Wisdom said he expects the new diversity plan will help bring AALANA to the fore of the minds of more faculty, staff and students at the university.

The 44-page plan, entitled Charting Our Course Five-Year Equity Action Plan, was created fall 2012 but was printed this summer. Predominately senior leadership, administrators and faculty of the university received the plan, Lawless-Andric said. Linking the plan on DEI’s webpage is also in progress, which will allow students to access the plan.

“The document really is incredible…” Wisdom said. “You look at [the plan] and say, ‘OK I can see how this will result in people understanding more and more about what diversity means and what it can do.’”

Lawless-Andric said sections in the plan on AALANA and the Office of Sexual and Relationship Violence Support Services are geared to help Kent State students.

“[DEI is] really strengthening and building up efforts with the student multicultural center looking at ways to continually support students retaining and graduating from Kent State,” Lawless-Andric said. “Specifically our AALANA students, so that’s another area, and the Women’s Center are increasing some of their efforts with women leadership development. So there are a lot of exciting things, and ways, I think student needs are met across the division.”

The reception for the Equity Action Plan will begin at 3:30 p.m. in the Student Center’s Ballroom Balcony and conclude at 5 p.m.

Contact Carley Hull at [email protected].