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Office for Institutional Diversity

Office for Institutional Diversity


Boston College Office for Institutional Diversity Briefing

FALL 2016

From the Executive Director

Patricia Lowe

Dear Colleagues:

We are pleased to share with you the Office for Institutional Diversity (OID) annual report highlighting some of our recent achievements, ongoing programs, and new initiatives.

In concert with the University’s Jesuit, Catholic mission, OID is dedicated to advancing and sustaining a culture and climate that is welcoming and respectful and fosters critical and transformative dialogue. Our programs are designed to promote meaningful interactions while broadening the experiences and perspectives of those in the University community.

We welcome the opportunity to discuss your thoughts, concerns, and questions. We invite you to learn more about our office and its mission by visiting our website and by following us on Twitter and Facebook.

Sincerely yours,
Patricia Lowe
Executive Director

Diversity and Inclusion Summit

Last June, more than 200 faculty and staff took part in the inaugural Diversity and Inclusion Summit, “Building and Leveraging Partnerships Across Campus,” sponsored by OID. Members of the Boston College community came together to share what is currently being done in the areas of diversity and inclusion across campus. Keynote speaker Damon A. Williams, senior vice president of the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, spoke about “Strategic Diversity Leadership: Activating Change and Transformation in Higher Education” at the daylong event, which focused on how Boston College pursues the social justice mission of the Society of Jesus. (Go to a video of the keynote address.)

SAVE THE DATE: The next Diversity and Inclusion Summit: "Learn, Reflect, Engage," takes place on May 24, 2017. The keynote speaker will be Daryl G. Smith, senior research fellow and professor emerita of education and psychology at Claremont Graduate University.

ADA Reasonable Accommodation

The Office for Institutional Diversity has streamlined the process for all faculty, staff, and student employees to request reasonable accommodation pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), assuring that all requests are handled consistently while maintaining confidentiality. For a full description and a list of BC resources, visit OID’s Accessibility Resources web page. A presentation about the accommodation process will take place on February 23, 2017. Registration information will be available on the Office of Employee Development website.

Living Out the Jesuit Mission: Diverse Perspectives Series

The Office for Institutional Diversity, in partnership with Campus Ministry, has revitalized the Diversity and Ignatian Tradition Initiative to examine how employees of various races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, and faith traditions incorporate the Jesuit tradition within their work at Boston College. After two successful sessions last year—one on the Black Lives Matter Movement and the other on the inclusion of LGBTQ community in the life and mission of Boston College–three programs have been scheduled for this year. The first, “Celebrating the Global Jesuit Community,” took place on November 3.

SAVE THE DATES: “A Woman’s Experience Working at a Jesuit Institution” will take place on February 7, 2017, and a program on the issue of trauma as a result of injustice is scheduled for April 11.

Title IX/Harassment Online Training

Federal regulations now require that faculty and staff complete sexual harassment training. OID and Human Resources, in partnership with the Provost’s Office, developed online courses on Title IX and preventing workplace harassment, which were disseminated over the summer. “The purpose of the courses is to learn how to recognize and prevent discriminatory harassment in educational institutions,” wrote Vice President for Human Resources David Trainor and Provost and Dean of Faculties David Quigley in a letter to faculty and staff. “They also provide insight about how to protect yourself and become aware of your conduct to prevent inadvertent harassment.” More than half of the faculty and staff have started or completed all components of the online training program. OID is working with the University’s vice presidents and deans to encourage 100 percent participation. Please address questions about the online courses to OID Associate Director Judy Ferres at 617–552–2947 or

University Affiliates Program

This fall, OID welcomed 14 employees to Boston College’s Affiliates Program, a year-long sequence of monthly seminars designed to prepare AHANA staff members for potential opportunities in executive, administrative, and managerial positions at the University while addressing critical themes in higher education. Since the program’s inception in 1999, 157, University employees have participated.

Boston College Employee Engagement Survey

Thank you to the more than 1,600 BC employees who responded to last fall’s survey on the University’s work environment developed by Human Resources, the Provost’s Office, OID, and senior administrators across campus. An article in the Boston College Chronicle provided information about the survey and its findings. OID is working with Vice President of Human Resources David Trainor to assess the survey’s findings and inform the University community of follow-up actions.

Cultural Competence Engagement Modules (CCEM)

Some 30 BC staff and administrators participated in a two-part pilot program last spring aimed at developing a deeper understanding of the perspectives that employees of diverse cultural backgrounds bring to the workplace, as well as building skills for more effective cross-cultural communication. In response to participant feedback, CCEM will be expanded to a six-part program and will relaunch as a pilot in the spring of 2017.

Boston College Office for Institutional Diversity
© 2016 The Trustees of Boston College