Diversity Aspiration Vision Statement
As a community dedicated to excellence in liberal arts education and informed by Quaker principles, Earlham College welcomes the contributions of divergent voices as we seek to foster a deep, shared sense of purpose. A diversity of human experiences and viewpoints in our learning community strengthens the educational experience of all members of the community. We therefore seek to promote diversity that respects and resonates with our core values, as expressed in such documents as Community Principles and Practices, the Statement on Religious Life at Earlham, and the Faculty Handbook’s statement on academic freedom.
As Principles and Practices reminds us, “To be a genuinely diverse community, we must expect and welcome changes and transformations.” This vision statement is an effort to focus on our aspirations to form a diverse community, to create opportunities for expressing our differences, and to provide context for the actions we undertake in the name of diversity.
As a learning community that aims to create social justice, we aspire to treat all humans with respect, honoring human dignity. We also acknowledge that Earlham College exists within a history of systemic cultural and economic oppression that has denied certain groups equal access to education and power. To help redress such injustice and to make our college community more representative of our society and world, we seek to promote the presence and voice of groups that have been historically oppressed because of such factors as race, ethnicity, sex, gender identity, gender expression,, sexual orientation, socioeconomic class, and physical ability.
In this spirit, we envision Earlham as a place where a diverse student body, faculty, and staff:
- Encourage contributions to the community by ensuring full representation and honoring the uniqueness of those groups that have faced oppression.
- Seek intercultural and cross-cultural communication.
- Cultivate in one another the courage, skill, and grace to discuss complex issues, about which we deeply disagree, including the current existence of discrimination in our society.
- Talk with one another in a spirit of openness and thoughtful exploration.
Toward these ends, we will devote resources to:
- Maintain and expand diversity in our curriculum.
- Enhance and enrich co-curricular programs and supportive networks.
- Attract, enroll, and retain a higher percentage of students with divergent backgrounds from the United States and abroad.
- Recruit, hire, and retain an increased number of faculty and staff to make the campus more diverse.
- Continue to analyze the changes in our society and to examine the scope of our diversity aspirations.
- Assess our programs formally and continually check our progress in achieving the above goals.
Clerk’s Note: In approving this Vision Statement the faculty recognizes that this version is a step in a journey. The document should not stay static but should evolve over time. The faculty asked the Diversity Progress Committee, as called for in the plan, to take responsibility for further revision of the Vision Statement. The faculty is ready to tackle the challenges that the Vision Statement presents to the community.