Leading for Change

Leading for Change is our university-level diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) team that serves as one of the driving forces for moving our institutional strategic plan forward.

The team consists of a core group and four active subcommittees whose work this year centers on: 

  • “We Are All Educators” Programming Series 
  • Policy audit with a DEI lens 
  • Disseminating information about the most recent climate survey
  • Employee recruitment practices 

Descriptions and leads of the subcommittees can be found below.

In Fall 2021, a new identity-based programming fund was established for our community members to apply for project support. This funding is a combination of a gift from the Newman Center and funds from the university’s operating budget. In addition, $2,500 has been allocated to each of the following programming months: Latinx Heritage Month, LGBTQ+ Month, Black History Month, and Women’s Herstory Month. If you are interested in applying for funding, please fill out this form

Other reminders:

  • There is a dedicated email for Leading for Change that is checked regularly. Please feel free to use this email, or contact one of the core group members with ideas, questions, concerns, etc. The email is leadingchange@fitchburgstate.edu.
  • Remember that we launched a new Leading for Change/Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion webpage last year.
  • The Bias Incident Response Team (BIRT) was launched last year. BIRT ensures students, faculty, and staff affected by bias or a bias-related incident have access to appropriate resources and assists the university in its response in situations that may impact the overall campus climate around diversity and inclusion. The team reviews and responds to reported bias-related incidents in an educational, non-confrontational and non-punitive manner.  

Thank you for committing to this important work that is centered in our institutional mission and core values and furthers progress on our strategic plan.

Updates from the Subcommittees

(Junior Peña)

One of the cornerstones of being a student-ready campus is fostering the principle that all employees are educators, no matter the role. The team has four points of emphasis scheduled for Spring 2022 and beyond. Watch for more details and please make time to engage in these sessions:

  • Empowerment and Professional Development for Front-Facing Administrative Assistants
  • Making Accessibility the New Standard
  • Identifying Signs of Disengagement, Depression, and Mental Health Strain in our Black and Brown Students and the General Student Population
  • Understanding the Needs of our Students in their own Words

(Hank Parkinson)

My expectation is that every administrative department on campus will conduct a policy audit using a DEI lens. The university has adapted a model from the Massachusetts Department of Higher Education to assist divisions and departments in reviewing policies, procedures, and practices for implicit bias, through a DEI lens. This team has pulled together resources to assist with these policy reviews and will provide support for departments as they embark on this endeavor.

(Pam McCafferty)

This team will disseminate findings and implications based on the 2020 administration of the climate survey over the course of the spring semester. Watch for communications and consider engaging in the conversation. 

(Bill Cummings and Kim Page)

This sub-committee assists Human Resources in developing and sharing strategies and resources to guide search committees and hiring managers in developing diverse pools of applicants for employment. 

Identity Based Programming

More information on this will be forthcoming.