I am committed to supporting diversity and inclusion in every social environment, including workplaces and educational environments because of my personal background of being a female representative of minorities. My vision of diversity and inclusion as necessary elements of an effective educational institution is based on my own experiences. Therefore, I see opportunities for the staff and students’ development in the creation of inclusive environments appropriate for interaction and collaboration of the diverse staff and students to share the vision and achieve the same goals.
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I believe that the staff and students at the University represent a distinctive community, and its uniqueness is caused by the diversity of races, cultures, worldviews, experiences, and values. It is important to promote this uniqueness while accentuating diversity and supporting inclusion without compromising the individuals’ equality in opportunities. In the inclusive environment, support is provided to the underrepresented populations. The focus should be on creating conditions comfortable for all diverse employees and students to make them proud of their diversity.
The reason is that the great diversity is a characteristic feature of the American society, and further trends in changing the ethnic composition of the American nation can lead to the necessity to address greater numbers of diverse and talented people who contribute to the national progress. I think that in each American institution, the collective experience of the diverse population creates the grounds for development and growth. The effective inclusion of diverse populations is the priority, and each individual should be equally recruited, mentored, supported, encouraged, and protected to develop his or her potential in a friendly positive setting.
Statement on Contribution to Diversity
My personal background as an African American female made me concentrate on the issue of diversity and inclusion in American society and workplaces and do all possible to contribute to diversity. Working as a leader in different organizations, I demonstrated my awareness of workplace diversity, sensitivity towards the diverse workforce’s needs, and support to diverse talents working as teams.
I worked much to create inclusive environments even in those organizations where diversity was respected by top managers only on paper. It was a great challenge for me to establish principles of pluralism in these workplaces and improve the experiences of diverse employees. Still, I was proud of the opportunity to work with culturally diverse populations and support them in the inclusion process.
In order to receive more opportunities to promote diversity and inclusion in organizations, I focused on the research and study of diversity in the organizational context. I paid much attention to studying diverse communities, individuals’ differences and backgrounds, and practices that are most effective to create an inclusive environment and promote the diverse talents in the organization. I became able to act not only as a passionate supporter of the idea of diversity in management but also as a professional having academic and research experience in the field.
At the current stage, I can refer to my experience in building inclusive environments and developing diversity policies in different organizations. I know what practices work best to support diverse populations in different contexts. Moreover, I am willing to develop and implement diversity and inclusion initiatives in the University of Virginia’s School of Engineering and Applied Science to use my knowledge for realizing the organization’s goals while addressing the University’s vision and values.
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