Ensuring Community Belonging

A note on diversity, equity and inclusion themes interwoven in our strategic plan.

Being a welcoming community—where students, faculty and staff of many backgrounds experience belonging and the ability to thrive—is the foundation for all we hope to achieve as a college. Diversity, equity and inclusion priorities are woven throughout our plans for the college for this reason.

Longstanding experiences of inequality in society and in sciences pose real challenges towards our achieving our goals. Our college-wide plan to improve equity, inclusion and belonging requires working together on a variety of fronts to promote a college climate that treats every person with dignity, respect and care; improving transparency through dedicated efforts related to institutional accountability; and better addressing representation through the recruitment, retention and support of individuals from populations historically marginalized in the sciences.

The College's overall strategic planning has involved a listening process with faculty, staff, students and other stakeholders. In 2020, an Action Team made up of faculty, staff, students and stakeholders from underrepresented populations in our community helped to synthesize recommendations related to diversity, equity and inclusion.

The college is moving forward with core strategies in these areas:

  • Representation: Continue and expand upon recruitment and retention efforts aimed at improving the way our college supports people with marginalized identities. 

Read our plans: Representation

  • Equity, Inclusion and Belonging: Improve the climate in ways that all community members feel safe, supported, included and seen at multiple levels in Natural Sciences. 

Read our plans: Equity, Inclusion and Belonging

  • Transparency: Improve evaluation and assessment, data availability, data-informed decision-making and organizational accountability.

 Read our plans: Transparency

Questions, thoughts and concerns about this area for action, or others in the college’s strategic plan, may be directed to Senior Assistant Dean for Strategy and Equity Initiatives Melissa Taylor: Melissa.Taylor@cns.utexas.edu.