New Diversity Initiatives (Summer 2020)

To achieve change in the George Fox community, the university has adopted the following strategies.

General Organizational & Leadership Strategy

Actions:

  • Develop common goals for providing diverse perspectives in leadership roles at the university 
  • Identify clear systems and processes to achieve desired goals throughout the institution 
  • Monthly dialogue and reports on progress at the Executive Leadership Team meeting  

Accountable for Strategy: The Executive Leadership Team 
Input: President and Chief Development Officer – staff and faculty  

Culture (Climate of the University)

Goal

Develop a guilt- and shame-free climate that frees students, faculty and staff to discuss issues of diversity transparently. The culture should be characterized by vulnerability, humility, trust, honesty, truth and grace.

Discussion Series

The institution will model engagement of race and ethnic issues through a series of key conversations featuring selected participants from within and external to the community. (Integrate race conversations into the curriculum throughout the university, accommodating different levels of race critical consciousness). The series will be led by MaryKate Morse, dean of the Portland Seminary, and Dr. Harris.

Actions:

  • Dr. Harris, president and dean of T.D. Jakes Divinity School, will give a guest lecture for THEO101 and join the podcast for a broad and introductory-level conversation on race from his perspective as a Black evangelical.
  • Dr. Harris will meet with students in a more intimate setting, most likely sponsored by the George Fox Black Student Union. This will be a deeper conversation primary for Black students (though all will be welcome), and the conversation will revolve around his IVP book, Is Christianity the White Man’s Religion: How the Bible is Good News for People of Color.
  • The university will purchase and provide to all employees a copy of Is Christianity the White Man’s Religion: How the Bible is Good News for People of Color. Small-group discussions will be structured throughout the employee base.

Accountable for Strategy: President and chief diversity officer

Strategic Implementation – Employees

Actions:

  • Continue annual diversity awareness development of all faculty and staff 
    • Reschedule the diversity training for directors that was canceled in spring 2020 by COVID-19 restrictions
  • Create learning opportunities to aid professors and staff in developing confidence and skill in navigating conversations about race in the classroom and among the faculty and employee base in general conversation
    • Develop a specific strategy to achieve this objective to include pre-tests and post-tests to examine growth of the community over time
  • Provide avenues for common reading and dialogue to further understanding of race and cultural issues in American culture

Accountable for Strategy: Chief diversity officer in concert with the Executive Leadership Team
Implementation: Leadership throughout the university as identified

Strategic Implementation – Students

Actions:

  • Develop intentional curricular objectives to be included throughout the curriculum of the university – especially in the undergraduate program – to address issues related to diversity, race and cultural awareness. Focus on developing this area as a competency for the undergraduate students and program.
    Accountable for Strategy: Provost and university academic leaders
    Implementation: Faculty of the university
    Input: Faculty, chief diversity officer 
  • Invest in student leaders of color. Provide stipends for multicultural organization leaders
    Accountable for Strategy: Vice president for student life, multicultural officers  
  • Advance a Mentor Program for Students of Color 
    Accountable for Strategy: Vice president for student life, multicultural officers  
  • Enhance the Student Success Program
    Accountable for Strategy: To be determined
  • Provide diversity training for all student leaders
    Accountable for Strategy: To be determined

Administrative Framework of the University

Actions:

  • Develop policies and procedures throughout the university that result in flourishing for employees of color. Clearly target policies and procedures that break down barriers and result in broader inclusion of employees of color in the processes of the university.
  • Develop recruitment strategies for employees of color throughout the university. Ensure that every search committee has access to a trained search advocate.
Accountable for Strategy: Executive Leadership Team
Implementation: Human resources and widespread department leadership at the university

Student Recruitment

Develop a system of recruitment that enhances the identification and matriculation of students of color

Actions:

  • Analyze current systems for possible bias 
  • Interview students and constituents to determine new methods of outreach to diverse communities 
  • Pilot new strategies for reaching new diverse communities

Accountable for Strategy: Vice president for enrollment and marketing  
Implementation: Admissions team

Board Development

Actions:

  • Develop and recruit three additional individuals of color to serve on the George Fox University Board of Trustees

Accountable for Strategy: President and chair of the board of trustees
Implementation Timeframe: Spring 2021

Community Engagement

Collaborate with Newberg political and governmental officials to develop a community that embraces diverse views and people

Actions:

  • Assign key staff to serve on city committees in service of a diverse community
  • Identify student representatives to also serve the community and specifically engage with the police force to build understanding and more effective relationships

Accountable for Strategy: President, chief diversity officer

Role of Chief Diversity Officer

The chief diversity officer reports to the president of the university and provides direct input to the university’s Executive Leadership Development Team on university decisions and direction.

Actions:

  • The CDO collects input from officers responsible for the diversity strategy and provides a formal report to the president on a monthly basis.  
  • The CDO reviews and provides input to the marketing staff to update the diversity website on a monthly basis. 
  • The CDO attends one Executive Leadership Team meeting a month and is provided access to minutes and discussions of all meetings. The ELT seeks the advice and perspective of the CDO on issues related to the management of the university.

Accountable for Strategy: Provost and president

Presidential Personal Strategies for Engagement

Actions:

  • Annually mentor at least one student  
  • Annually address resident assistant leaders and address reasons for emphasis on diversity  
  • Host Act Six students for dinner at president’s home twice a year 
  • Financially support bringing diverse voices to campus throught the Presidential Lecture Series (two 2019-20 speakers addressed the 400th anniversary of the slave trade) 

Accountable for Strategy: President