Our Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion
Statement by Dean Kathy Farrell
Now must be different because we believe in the power of every person. Our Nebraska Business environment must promote dignity and respect within our community, so we accelerated the process of creating a Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Plan for our college. We are identifying actions we can take to create real change. I want to express my gratitude for those in our Nebraska Business community who have emailed to share their experiences, ideas, time and talent as we work to advance diversity and inclusion efforts in business and beyond.
Associate Dean Rik Barrera will lead our college’s diversity and inclusion efforts in his expanded role as associate dean of student services, inclusion and chief operating officer. Rik has provided valuable insights and ideas as we continue to build a safe and inclusive college and a second home away from home for our students.
The plans for a new Inclusive Excellence Gathering Space are underway in Howard L. Hawks Hall in the space formerly occupied by the Huskers Shop. As soon as designs are approved, the construction will begin with the goal of opening yet this fall.
A Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Board of faculty, staff, students, external business partners and alumni is currently being formed to assist with formalizing our initiatives and priorities, establishing and tracking goals, and ensuring action and achievement.
We are expanding our training for faculty and staff and enhancing our business curriculum with a greater focus on diversity and inclusion. Examples include incorporating case studies, class discussion topics, guest speakers and an online library of resources (videos, books and more) to help.
This is just the beginning for our commitment to fostering a more diverse, equitable and inclusive community. Remember, real change starts with ourselves. I challenge you to join me in committing time for personal development on these issues. The university’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion created a webpage with Racial Equity Resources to utilize, and I recommend subscribing to their newsletter.
Rik and I welcome your feedback on how we can continue to advance our diversity and inclusion efforts to make our college stronger and our graduates the business leaders the world needs. Together – it’s how we do big things.
Dr. Kathy Farrell
James Jr. and Susan Stuart Endowed Dean
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