The Campus Climate Survey Results

Hannah Providence, Contributing Writer

The chance for a gift card seems to have worked well, as more than 1,500 student, faculty, and staff responded. Regarding the perceptions of the university’s climate, diversity, and inclusion efforts were recorded and analyzed.

University President Steven Kaplan sent an email on Sept. 3 identifying the key findings:

Students and faculty agreed that bias in regard to socio-economic status is the most commonly reported at the university. Only 59 percent of students and 67 percent faculty said that people with low socio-economic status are treated “respectfully” or “very respectfully” at the university. There were also many responses that did not agree that non-native English speakers are being treated respectfully.

The Campus Climate Survey: Summary of Findings and Recommendations also revealed that approximately 80 percent of the student and faculty population agree that the Myatt Center for Diversity and Inclusion (CDI) and other student organizations display “visual leadership to foster diversity/inclusion on campus.” this quote refers to a question asked on the climate survey. CDI which collaborated on the survey, was praised in open-ended responses.

The survey showed that the university still has room to improve, with 64 percent of students and staff selected “agree” to the following survey question: “my work/school load prevents me from attending diversity and inclusion events.”  Students asked, instead, for diversity and inclusion events to be included in the courses they are already taking.

The survey left room for open-ended responses about ways to address the barriers to inclusion on campus. Students said they want more support for the recruitment and retention of black and Latino students. They also want to ensure that proper space is provided for religious practices on campus. Faculty are looking for more clarity on whether they are expected to attend certain events during or after work hours, and faculty also would like to increase hires to diversify faculty/staff, as well as campus and university leadership.

Kaplan acknowledged Dr. Danielle Cooper, assistant professor of criminal justice,and Ms. Ghata Vasavada, MA student in industrial and organizational psychology, for leading the work of the assessment subteam of the IDEA Council to produce the report.