Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion

To our student body, faculty and staff:

The tragedy of the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, among many others, are the most recent examples of violence and injustice brought upon Black people. We must acknowledge and understand the systemic inequities and discrimination in the country, our profession and our college.

The college leadership team has read and reflected on related social media posts from our students and alumni using #BlackAtKState, in particular, those voicing their experiences as Black students at K-State. We acknowledge the strength, endurance and persistence of K-State BIPOC* students, staff, faculty and administration. Our response must go beyond providing a statement; we are committed to finding solutions.

First, we commit as a college to educate ourselves on the issues of inequity and discrimination. We will also provide more open channels of communication and a listening ear for all who will share their experiences. Communication can provide action steps toward a better college culture for all of us, especially for our BIPOC, LGBTQIA+**, women, white allies, and international colleagues and students. The college will provide opportunities for input on issues, support toward becoming a more effective ally, and understanding of the impacts of inequity and discrimination on our profession.

Second, we commit to a more active role toward equity and inclusion. Our college diversity committee, made up of faculty and staff, will be expanded to include student representatives. A goal will be a deeper understanding and subsequent action on how policy, pedagogy and college norms affect our different populations.

We dedicate ourselves to earning your trust. Our immediate points of contact for you to be heard will be Amy Betz, assistant dean for retention, diversity and inclusion,; and LaVerne Bitsie-Baldwin, director of the Multicultural Engineering Program, We welcome any concerns, questions, insights and recommendations.

Thank you for joining us in this effort as we move forward to do better.

– Deans and department heads of the Carl R. Ice College of Engineering

*BIPOC: Black, Indigenous and People of Color

**LGBTQIA+: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning, Intersex, Asexual or Ally, + Other Non-Heterosexual People