Inclusion and Diversity
Over the past several years, many college campuses have faced turmoil and tumult around questions of fairness, inclusion, equity, and diversity. Texas State University was among them.
Recognizing the distress, Texas State sought to reinforce its message and unwavering commitment to listening, improving, and acting so that this past does not define our future. We recognize that the path to inclusive excellence will be as varied as the faculty, staff, and students who make up our vibrant institution. Indeed, members of the university community have already forged pathways through crucial conversations, new staff positions, artistic displays, dialogue sessions, demonstrations, process improvements, poetry, music, and other forms of expression.
Texas State is guided by a commitment to shared values, including a spirit of inclusiveness, the free exchange of ideas, and a sense of community. To achieve these ideals, we strive for all members of the university community to feel welcome, embrace a diversity of people and ideas, and ensure that all voices are heard. In addition to many other projects across campus, the Office of the Provost is pleased to highlight the following initiatives. For information on the university's widespread efforts and engagements, please visit: https://inclusion.txstate.edu/
In July 2018, Dr. Scott Bowman, associate professor of criminal justice, was named the special assistant. Through collaboration with Faculty Development, Faculty and Academic Resources, the Office of Equity and Inclusion, and many other groups, Dr. Bowman develops programs that facilitate an inclusive academic climate, promote the recruitment and advancement of all faculty, and ensure fairness in policies and practices that affect faculty.
Texas State University is committed to enhancing the diversity of its faculty. To this end, a comprehensive toolkit has been designed to assist academic units in planning for and implementing search processes that result in more inclusive and intentional hiring practices. A Microsoft word version of the toolkit is also available. The toolkit includes a number of best practices, as well as specific examples from departments at Texas State. Search committees are encouraged to use this toolkit as a means to implement the university’s shared values, ensure that all voices are heard, and strive for all members of the university community to feel included and welcome. Feedback and suggestions for improvement, recommendations for other materials, and requests for training or meetings with search committees may be sent to Dr. Scott Bowman: firstname.lastname@example.org.
This collection of short chapters, edited by Dr. Miriam Williams and Dr. Octavio Pimentel, is the result of an open invitation for faculty to share their thoughts and vision for diversity and inclusion at a Texas State. This edited book collection is designed to pave a path forward, toward healing and reconciliation. The editors acknowledge that we must continue to share our stories (cuentos) in real time and face to face, but there is power in the written word, carefully crafted and considered.
In September 2019, the university issued a call for proposals for another edition of this edited book collection. The second edition, Cuentos and Testimonies II: Students' Voices, Inclusion, & Anti-Racism, will highlight students’ voices and perspectives. Various forms of expression or art are acceptable, including but not limited to short essays, poetry, interviews, videos, and photography. More information on the call for proposals is here: Call for Proposals Cuentos and Testimonies.
Faculty from all colleges and departments are invited to attend the annual Multicultural Curriculum Transformation and Research Institute. The Institute is a week-long experience that focuses on enriching the curriculum by re-envisioning goals, content, teaching strategies, assessment, and classroom interactions with a multicultural lens. To date, over 200 courses at Texas State have been transformed through the institute.
The undergraduate minor in Latina/o Studies is a multidisciplinary university-wide program. Students learn about the social, political, economic, historical and cultural processes that impact Latina/o communities in the United States. The minor emphasizes applied skills and knowledge, including research skills, for better participating in our diverse society.
The interdisciplinary African American Studies minor will provide undergraduate students with a deeper understanding of the African diaspora, as well as the complex history, culture, and contributions of Africans and African Americans to our society. The minor centers on history and culture and will add breadth of educational opportunities offered to all students.