Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
The Office of the Provost & Chief Academic Officer values diversity, equal opportunity, and inclusion as central to our pursuit for academic excellence, discovery and engagement. To facilitate diverse perspectives, encourage free exchange of ideas, and cultivate mutual respect and compassion, the Office of the Provost & Chief Academic Officer actively promotes the following programs and initiatives.
Aggies Think, Care, Act
Aggies Think, Care, Act is a campus-wide initiative to foster a caring community that elevates the academic experience for all Aggies and prepares students to become global citizens and leaders. Aggies Think, Care, Act embraces civic responsibility, respect for diversity, and human dignity. We challenge all Aggies to acknowledge and act upon these principles.
Aggies receive unique opportunities for civic engagement and leadership roles that prepare our graduates to become leaders in their local communities and in communities around the world. These opportunities — both inside and out of the classroom — embody the “Aggie Experience.”
The extensive programs affiliated with the Aggies, Think, Care, Act initiative make a Utah State University degree a transformative experience, preparing students to make a meaningful impact on individuals, communities, the state, the nation and our world.
Aspire Alliance IChange Network
USU is a member of the Aspire Alliance’s Institutional Change initiative (IChange) to improve the recruitment, hiring, and retention of faculty from underrepresented groups (URGs) and the employment of inclusive teaching, advising, and research mentoring practices by all faculty. The IChange Network is designed to catalyze institutional change by providing a comprehensive, systematic approach to organizational transformation using a structured self-assessment process to inform the development and implementation of an action plan. Although the national network is focused on the STEM fields, USU has chosen to focus efforts across all academic fields.
USU is participating in the IChange Network under the Office of the Provost & Chief Academic Officer. Michelle Baker, Abby Benninghoff, and Claudia Radel, along with the Provost & Chief Academic Officer, lead the USU initiative, with an IChange Team that meets monthly to evaluate practices, policy, and resources to develop and implement an action plan for change. The full IChange Team is: Vicki Allan (COS), Michelle Baker (COS), Paul Barr (Office of the Provost & Chief Academic Officer), Abby Benninghoff (CAAS), Boyd Edwards (COS), Rich Etchberger (Office of the Provost & Chief Academic Officer), Christy Glass (CHaSS), Susan Madsen (Business), Lindsay Ozburn (Libraries), Claudia Radel (QCNR), Ricardo Ramirez (COS), Heloisa Rutigliano (CAAS), Becca Seamons (Human Resources), Chad Simon (BUS), Mario Suarez (CHES), Melissa Tehee (CEHS), Travis Thurston (AIS), Michael Torrens (Office of the Provost & Chief Academic Officer), Elizabeth Vargis (Engineering), Richard Walker (CCA), and Celina Wille (Extension).
National Network Website: https://www.aspirealliance.org/institutional-change/ichange-network
Mentoring & Encouraging Student Academic Success (MESAS)
The Mentoring & Encouraging Student Academic Success (MESAS) program aims to encourage more Native American students to pursue graduate degrees in STEM fields, build a more inclusive campus environment, and provide academic assistant and cultural programming for all Native American students at Utah State University. Website: https://www.usu.edu/mesas/
Office of Equity
USU sees an environment in which every individual has an opportunity to learn, work and contribute, and where full inclusion and respect for all people encourages creativity and productivity. The result will be students, faculty and staff working together, serving and strengthening our local, national and global communities.
We institutionalize affirmative action/equal opportunity concepts and actions into everyday operations and activities:
- Advising and assisting the USU community in ensuring an equal opportunity environment, free of illegal discrimination and harassment (including sexual harassment).
- Assisting with efforts to create a gender and ethnically diverse community of students, faculty and staff, in order to redress imbalances and enrich the university experience.
Office of Global Engagement
The Office of Global Engagement provides services and support for USU’s international, degree-seeking students and scholars, including immigration services, international admissions and study abroad opportunities. Its mission is to promote the success of students and scholars, connect communities and advance intercultural awareness by providing access to meaningful international experiences, academic exchange, and support services.
The primary mission of the USU Inclusion Center is to implement effective programming that supports the academic, cultural, and social experiences of students from diverse backgrounds. We also provide leadership for positive change that creates a campus and community environment that respects and embraces diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Interfaith Initiative identifies resources and provides tools for sharing authentically about closely held religious (or lack-of-religious) commitments, engaging more productively with those who hold different views, and building community across potential “faith-divides” on campus.
Center for Intersectional Gender Studies and Research
The new Center for Intersectional Gender Studies and Research will build upon the highly successful history of the university’s Center for Women and Gender. The new center will leave in place the important mission of the Center for Women and Gender while at the same time broadening and strengthening USU’s long-term commitment to students, faculty and women on campus.
Latinx Cultural Center
The Latinx Cultural Center (LCC) at Utah State University serves as a conduit for service, engagement, advocacy, and visibility for the Latinx community on campus and in the Cache Valley and surrounding areas. The LCC is committed to empowering all who recognize a vested interest in the Latinx community by focusing on the pillars of academic, educational, personal, and professional growth. The LCC also serves as a communal space on campus for programs and groups that work to mentor and showcase the academic and individual potential of USU students who identify as Latinx or are interested in Latinx culture. Such programs include LASER at USU, Latinos in Action (LIA) chapter, and much more. In addition, the LCC is devoted to educating the campus and the public on issues that affect the Latinx community and is committed to the cause of diversity and representation in higher education.
President's Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives
President Cockett created a Diversity and Inclusion Task Force to guide the university’s efforts to foster a diverse and inclusive university system. Learn more about the President's Initiatives.
For more information on diversity resources, please contact:
Janis L. Boettinger, Vice Provost for Global Engagement
Phone: (435) 797-8176