Recognizing the strength that stems from a diversity of perspectives, values, ideas, backgrounds, and beliefs, Pratt’s leadership launched a major effort in 2015 to promote ongoing diversity, equity, and inclusion across the Institute. The Diversity Strategic Planning Committee worked with various constituents in the Pratt community through town hall meetings and focus groups, making sure all voices were heard. The resulting Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Strategic Plan was finalized in 2018 and incorporated into the comprehensive Strategic Plan. After reflecting on the plan’s progress and the continued needs of the community, the plan was updated in 2022 to the current four pillars:
- Creating a Welcoming Environment. We will build an inclusive community where students, faculty and staff are treated with respect, ideas are freely expressed, and differences are accepted and valued. We will cultivate an inclusive culture of belonging and connectedness where students, faculty and staff are valued, respected, supported and engaged. We will foster a safe campus environment where community members can thrive without fear of hate, bias, discrimination and/or harassment. We will ensure that facilities, programs, websites and technology systems are accessible for all community members. We will develop an anti-racism and anti-oppression framework and training resources to improve curriculum, pedagogy, policies, practices and procedures. We will increase financial support and resources for low socioeconomic status and first-generation students. We will enhance faculty and staff benefit options, onboarding processes and orientation workshops.
- Recruiting and Retaining Diverse Students. We will expand efforts to recruit and retain diverse undergraduate and graduate students from underrepresented groups. We will expand recruitment efforts to increase the number of domestic Black, Latinx, Native/Indigenous, and Asian American/Pacific Islander (BIPOC) undergraduate students. We will expand recruitment efforts to increase the number of domestic BIPOC graduate students. We will develop pipelines for BIPOC undergraduate and graduate students, including alumni from Associates, Center for K-12, Munson Williams Pratt, and Pre-College programs. We will increase scholarships and financial aid to improve yields for BIPOC students. We will leverage best practices from HEOP to improve retention of students who identify as BIPOC, first-generation and/or low socioeconomic status. We will enhance support and resources for BIPOC students participating in the Diverse Scholars Program.
- Recruiting and Hiring Diverse Faculty and Staff. We will enhance recruiting, hiring and search committee processes to improve the diversity of our faculty, administration and staff from underrepresented groups. We will expand recruitment efforts to increase the number of full-time faculty and academic leadership hires that identify as Black, Latinx, Native/Indigenous, and Asian American/Pacific Islander (BIPOC). We will expand recruitment efforts to increase the number of BIPOC staff and administrative leadership hires. We will expand recruitment efforts and ensure equitable hiring practices to increase the number of BIPOC part-time faculty. We will develop pipelines and proactive recruitment strategies to diversify applicant pools by race/ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation and disability status. We will appoint Search Advocates and ensure diverse representation on all search committees. We will develop Recruiting and Search Guidelines and train search committee members on equitable search and interview practices.
- Retaining and Supporting Diverse Faculty and Staff. We will improve retention efforts, professional development and career advancement opportunities to support diverse faculty, administration and staff from underrepresented groups. We will provide internal and external professional development opportunities for faculty and staff that identify as Black, Latinx, Native/Indigenous, and Asian American/Pacific Islander (BIPOC). We will create a leadership development program for BIPOC faculty and staff, and encourage participation in the AICAD BIPOC Academic Leadership Institute. We will develop mentoring programs for BIPOC faculty and staff. We will design academic research programs and opportunities for diverse faculty and staff to showcase their work.We will increase social and professional engagement among diverse faculty and staff across the institution. We will launch a DEI Faculty Fellowship program to support alignment between institutional and academic DEI goals.