During the last two weeks, more than 100 employees and students participated in town hall meetings focused on equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) at UW-Stout. We heard from colleagues and students about what we are doing well at UW-Stout and how we can continue to improve. Notes from the student and faculty/staff town hall are available online.
While much was discussed, the focus was on how we can continue to create a more supportive and welcoming environment at our university and help extend such efforts throughout our community. Specific suggestions included enhancing community outreach with the greater Menomonie area and expanding professional development opportunities related to EDI. We also heard comments about the need to increase awareness and involvement in EDI professional development and events, as well as comments about a desire for more infusion of EDI into the curriculum. We also heard about the importance of recruiting, retaining, and promoting students, faculty, and staff from under-represented groups.
The input provided at the town hall meetings underscores the need for a shared commitment to our EDI work. The Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Team (EDIT) will use this feedback to develop the next inclusive excellence action plan. EDIT is also leading the content development for a new webpage resource that will be available in the fall semester.bOther efforts are also underway, including the development of a Program Theory of Change to establish a clear connection between activities in the inclusive excellence action plan and tangible outcomes for inclusion. This work will inform the development of a comprehensive evaluation plan for EDI efforts. Additionally, multiple groups, including the RES/GLP committee, NTLC, and GERT are working on curricular changes aligned with EDI efforts. We have made great strides to ensure our students graduate with greater cultural understanding, but our work in this area must continue.
I appreciate all of your feedback to keep us moving forward and focused on continuous improvement.