Below are some of the initiatives we are working on this year. For a complete list of all our efforts, download our Diversity Initiatives, Activities and Events (PDF).
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On April 4, 2017, College at Brockport President Heidi Macpherson hosted a Student Forum. The forum was attended by Brockport student leaders, College leadership, Mayor Margaret Blackman, and Brockport Village Police Chief Daniel Varrenti.
A town hall meeting approach to engage faculty, staff, and students in dialogues on racial tensions and diversity issues occurring nationally, in Brockport’s surrounding communities, and on our campus. In collaboration with several divisions across campus as well as student organizations, the campus community explored several topics related to the negative impacts of the intersectionality of race, poverty and violence. Past topics have included micro-aggressions, hate speech, racial justice, the #BlackLivesMatter Movement, and community building. Upcoming conversations will focus on Muslim communities in the era of Trump, cultural humility, implicit bias, intersections of institutional racism and gender normativity, and ensuring the academic success of men of color in higher education.
Faculty and Staff Recruitment
The Office of Affirmative Action and Human Resources has significantly revised The College’s search and recruitment process.
- We have invested heavily in a new, comprehensive Applicant Tracking System, which will provide robust reporting capabilities in support of our diversification efforts.
- We have developed a multi-point search training program, mandatory for all hiring managers and search committee members. Among other topics, the training provides an overview of Affirmative Action and Equal Employment Opportunity, as well as The College’s specific requirements regarding compliance during the search process.
- To meet The College’s responsibility to make a good faith effort in diversifying the pool of applicants available to search committees, we work jointly with each hiring manager to advertise in nationally recognized venues, such as The Chronicle of Higher Ed, Recruit Disability.org, Higher Ed Jobs.com, and through the U.S. Department of Labor at Job Central.com (formerly USA Jobs), all designed to reach the largest and most diverse aggregation of ready job seekers. Further, through the American Association for Access, Equity, and Diversity (AAAED), we are exploring additional, more focused advertising venues, including, but not limited to, Ability Jobs.com, Getting Hired.com, LGBT Connect.com, and Vet Central.com.
- We have revamped The College’s Waiver of Search protocol to emphasize the importance of conducting proper Affirmative Action searches and increase access.
The Governor has set very ambitious for expectations/goals for the procurement of goods from Minority and Women owned businesses (MWBEs). Brockport’s 2015/16 MWBE percentage was 54.06% [15.9% Minority Business Enterprises (MBE) and 38.09 Women Business Enterprises (WBE)].
Extending the requirement for a D course for all students
Since 2011, most transfer students had been exempt from the requirement to take a Diversity (D) or Other World Civilizations (O) course. In spring 2016, the College Senate approved a proposal for transfer students to meet the D/O requirement.
Development of Bias Incident Reporting
In the spring 2016 semester, cabinet approved a plan to develop and implement a bias-related incident reporting system. Faculty, staff and students will be able to report concerns anonymously, related to bias, discrimination and hate. Reports will be reviewed and acted upon by a team who will provide timely support and response to involved individuals. The system is being further developed and is expected to go live in spring 2017.
Gender Inclusive Housing Policy and Process
We have had a Gender Inclusive Housing policy since 2014. We improved our promotion of this policy in 2015 and included questions on the housing application to make it a clear and accessible process. All of our residence halls are gender inclusive, which is unique because many schools have designated wings or areas.
Resident Directors participate in Safe Zone training annually (since 2012), and spend a full day in August at a retreat focused on EDI (equity, diversity and inclusion), creating an inclusive residence hall community, etc. There are numerous other training activities related to EDI throughout the year. For our professional staff meeting, we have had a standing agenda item related to EDI for the past 2 years, where we discuss issues that our students are facing, discuss articles, watch videos, etc. Lastly, we read Contested Issues in Student Affairs by Magolda & Magolda in spring 2016, which included several chapters on diversity related issues in our field.
Student Union & Activities
Tunnel of Oppression
This is a multi-day event, currently facilitated through Student Union & Activities, where students highlight issues of oppression in our society by walking attendees through various rooms that they’ve created. Some examples of topics are bullying, ableism, racism, body image, sexism, religious discrimination, etc. This program started in 2012.
Leadership Development Program
Each level of the Leadership Development Program seeks to enhance students’ understanding of their own cultural identity while building cultural humility and a social justice lens.
Community Service Initiatives
- Migrant Farm Worker Clothing Drive: Sought to raise awareness and goods for the local migrant farm worker population
- MLK Day of Service: Each year we bring students to an event in Rochester where we celebrate the life and work of Dr. King while also giving back with community members
- Interfaith Day of Service: Each year during Interfaith Day of Service we allow students to work with a variety of faith groups and discuss service through interfaith dialogue
Throughout the year, we host numerous deliberative dialogues aimed at discussing important campus topics. In our first year (last year) Dialogues were hosted on the following related topics:
- Ending Discrimination on a College Campus
- Understanding Activism
- Understanding Citizenship (exploring immigration)
- Fair and Impartial Policing
- March 2016, 15 of the 16 officers were trained at SUNY Geneseo
- The focus is on implicit biases that officers bring to the job.
- We trained Monroe Community College officers on our campus. Additional Information is available on the SUNY Big Ideas Blog.
EMSA Collaborative Training
On August 23, 2016, 250 student leaders participated in a collaborative training. This training is for EMSA student leaders in Residential Life/Learning Communities, Student Union & Activities, Community Development, Campus Rec, Student Retention, Prevention and Outreach, and Career Services. For the past 4 years, the training has sought to facilitate discussions with student leaders about topics of diversity, equity and inclusion.
Rochester Education Opportunity Center (REOC) Events
- Multicultural Day held on November 10, 2016. This has been a staple part of the REOC for several years.
- Barbershop Talk: A discussion for men regarding social issues and opportunities
Self-Empowerment and Acceptance: This presentation helps participants to recognize their strengths and develop a new and positive mindset.
- Let’s Change the Conversation—Why Survivors are the Experts: This interactive presentation laid the foundation on how and why dating and domestic violence occurs, while focusing on an individual, local community, national and global response to a crime that is 100% preventable.
- Rochester Police Department Body Worn Camera Initiative: This presentation explained how the Rochester Police Department’s Body Worn Camera Program works and its connection to violence prevention in the community.
- Mental Health and Substance Abuse: This workshop discussed the truth vs. myths regarding mental health, substance abuse and their relationship to violence in the community and the stigma associated with mental health and substance abuse.