Diversity

Baldwin Wallace University Institutional Diversity Definition

Preface:
Baldwin Wallace University affirms a commitment to diversity in a variety of forms, believing that diversity is more than an all-inclusive list of demographics. Baldwin Wallace’s rich history is distinctively tied to inclusion and we are dedicated to building upon that legacy by celebrating our heritage, acknowledging our challenges, and promoting a community structure that reflects the diversity of our multicultural and intercultural world. We aim to achieve diversity in all that we do in an effort to further strengthen the community of Baldwin Wallace University.

Definition:
At Baldwin Wallace University, we define diversity as the ability to think critically while acknowledging and respecting different beliefs, practices and norms. Diversity is a process of opening minds and hearts to different opinions. Diversity fosters learning outcomes that are enhanced by life, classroom and professional experiences, and the appreciation of cultural and social beliefs. In addition, diversity at BW encourages each individual to explore and embrace individual uniqueness as we uphold our community standards, celebrate strategic change and honor traditions.

The Diversity, Integration and Inclusion Committee at Baldwin Wallace University has taken the necessary steps to define diversity in a manner that is consistent with the community's desire to monitor and facilitate diversity initiatives and ways of thinking. The definition does not infringe on the Federal Government's guidelines related to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 or the Anti-Discrimination Law. Further, the definition does not usurp the Non-Discrimination Policy enforced at Baldwin Wallace University.

Diversity Courses at Baldwin Wallace University

At Baldwin Wallace University we value and appreciate that a diverse curriculum supports our mission and produces graduates who function well in multicultural and intercultural environments. Students can take courses that stretch their imagination in a plethora of ways: Jazz History, Multicultural Psychology, Women in Western Civilizations and Media and Diversity are just a few examples. In addition, all students are required to take LAS 200 which "is designed as a common experience across all sections” and uses “the ideas of great thinkers to consider how culture shapes human behavior, human relationships and the relationship between people and the natural world, both in the past and today."

Moreover, students are able to put their theoretical foundation to good use by participating in a variety of co-curricular initiatives that extend the classroom. Service learning, community service and volunteering are often incorporated into classroom content. Rigorous debate and intentional listening are encouraged in the context of understanding and grasping the concepts of multiple identity development.  Course offerings reflect our goal to prepare students to think critically while increasing their aptitude and appreciation for cultural awareness.

Diversity and Gender Studies

Beginning in the Fall 2010, Diversity Affairs started a partnership with two academic units to engage students who have selected gender or diversity studies as a minor. Students are encouraged to explore various aspects of gender and diversity in an intercultural world. To enhance discussions and maximize intellectual curiosity, visual stimuli such as art, films and print sources (e.g., research articles, books and newspapers) are used to guide and stimulate thinking that supports academic development.

Students explore multiple ways of examining the world and are able to filter relevant information in a variety of ways:  individually, culturally and collectively. In addition, students participate on a voluntary basis, giving their time monthly to activities related to gender and diversity studies.

Diversity Studies

The minor in diversity studies has two purposes: to teach students about diversity of the United States, with a special focus on gender, and to help students find innovative ways of living within a pluralistic society. For the purposes of this minor, "diversity" encompasses cultural, racial, ethnic, religious, sexual, generational and physical diversities within the United States. "Gender" is understood as a subset of diversity and includes the physiology, sociology or psychology of gender difference, sexual identities, gender stereotypes and/or social, economic, cultural and historical structures relating to men's and women's status."

"The minor is intended to complement students' majors. Its interdisciplinary design introduces students to the different ways the disciplines conceptualize, investigate and analyze issues of diversity. The program of study will aid students in refining and expressing their own ideas about diversity, and will encourage them to bring new perspectives to bear on their other areas of study. A capstone seminar will provide students with theoretical tools to integrate the material from their courses with their research or career choices in a sophisticated manner."

-Dr. Deb Esty, Director of the Diversity Studies minor, Department of Psychology

Gender Studies

"Gender studies examines the significance of social constructions of sex, gender and sexuality as they structure the meaning of personal identity and social institutions like work, family, medicine and the law. The gender studies minor is an interdisciplinary program that allows students to choose from a number of different disciplines and topics to meet their individual interests while also acquiring a breadth of knowledge about how gender and sexuality are explored across multiple academic fields. Gender studies courses seek to enhance the integration of knowledge about gender and the social institutions that help to structure it beyond the classroom to one's public and personal life.”

"The minor requires a total of 18 credit hours from a menu of options across multiple disciplines, with credit accumulated from at least three different departmental prefixes. Up to four of those 18 credit hours can be substituted with an approved independent study or internship coordinated with a faculty member working within the gender studies minor. Completion of the minor requires a not-for-credit reflection paper that summarizes the student's experience across the minor courses."

-Dr. Amy Story, Director of the Gender Studies minor, Department of Philosophy

For more information contact:

Dr. Deb Esty (Psychology)
desty@bw.edu

Melanie Jones (Multicultural Student Services)
mcoleman@bw.edu

C.J. Harkness (Diversity Affairs)
charknes@bw.edu

Dr. Amy Story (Philosophy)
astory@bw.edu

Diversity Affairs Internship Program

Congruent with student development, Diversity Affairs created an internship opportunity for students who show a high degree of interest in diversity, multicultural affairs, pluralism or intercultural affairs. Each summer, one student is selected to work on a full-time basis, and during the academic year the intern supports and maintains the daily operations of tasks related to the position. The diversity intern reports to the director of Diversity Affairs of the University  and is responsible for planning at least two major events that will occur during the academic year. Areas of exploration are broad. With guidance and direct assistance, the intern works closely with student organizations, departments and entities to ensure the success of the programs.

The Black Forum

The Black Forum advocates on behalf of black faculty and staff and other people of color. In the spirit of maintaining harmony and diversity, and furthering the University's mission, we are committed to helping the University be responsive to the needs of blacks and other people of color to ensure that the aforementioned community is equitably represented at BW.

On an annual basis, the forum takes part in sponsoring and in collaboratively working with the BW community to ensure the following goals are carried out:

  • Promote the interests of black faculty and staff
  • Offer assistance to the University with the recruitment of black and other faculty and staff of color
  • Assist in welcoming and orienting new black faculty, staff and students, and other people of color
  • Serve as a resource bureau of informed people for Baldwin Wallace University and the broader community

Membership Of The Organization

The membership of the Black Forum shall be open to all full and part-time faculty and staff at Baldwin Wallace University whose primary concerns include, but are not limited to, increasing awareness of issues and concerns of blacks and other people of color.

Each year a newly elected executive board is charged to promote community dignity and respect in the community in the spirit of the ancestors which include previous African Americans who have given their careers to the mission of Baldwin Wallace University.

Contact Information:

Ericka L. Walker-Smith, Chair
elwalker@bw.edu

Kenneth Atchinson, Treasurer
katchins@bw.edu

Student Services

  • Academic and Cultural Events Series (ACES)
  • Admission
  • BW Scholars (for high school students)
  • Disability Services
  • Diversity Aid/Scholarships
  • Learning Assistance
  • SPROUT (for single parents)
  • Upward Bound (for high school students)

Student Organizations

  • Allies (Gay/Straight Alliance)
  • Black Student Alliance (BSA)
  • Hillel Foundation for Jewish campus life
  • Hispanic American Student Association (HASA)
  • People of Color United (POCU)
  • POWRE (Women's resources)
  • Voices of Praise (VOP) gospel choir
  • Faith-based organizations
  • Other cultural organizations

Professional Affinity Groups

  • Black Forum
  • UNIDOS

Resources

  • Adult and Continuing Education
  • First-Year Experience
  • Diversity Affairs
  • LGBT Services
  • International Student Services
  • Multicultural Student Services
  • Military and Veterans information

Academics

  • Diversity Minor
  • Explorations/Study Abroad
  • Lecture series
  • Intercultural education
  • International studies
  • Language Across the Curriculum
  • Liberal Arts and Sciences 200
  • Diversity courses (BW Catalog)